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    Oil in Focus: Indian Energy Companies Eyeing Major Stakes in Russian Firms

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    India’s Petroleum Minister is leading a delegation to SPIEF in an effort to push for more assets purchases of Russian oil & gas companies.

    India’s Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan is leading a high level delegation, including top bosses of Indian Oil and Gas companies, to Russia. A statement released by the Ministry said, “The Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas, Dharmendra Pradhan will be visiting St Petersburg, Russia from 16-17 June 2016 to represent India at the St Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF).”

    Pradhan will be meeting his Russian counterpart Alexander Novak and CEOs of Rosneft, Gazprom, Gazpromneft, Lukoil and Novatek during his visit.

    Energy expert Narendra Taneja said, the “visit by the minister is aimed at deepening their already existing very good relationship in oil & gas sector between the two countries.

    India is very keen that Indian & Russian companies should join hands and try to create win-win opportunities for both. Another area which could be explored is India’s effort to buy more oil & gas from Russia.”

    Taneja stated that India would also like Russian companies to come and invest in India in areas like refinery and gas pipelines.

    Sources say that Pradhan’s visit may see progress on ONGC Videsh Ltd’s proposal for acquisition of 11% in Rosneft’s Vankorneft oil & gas field.  India wants a lower price for the proposed stake as compared to the 15% acquisition in the same field last year.

    Taneja said, “Indian companies are always looking for good opportunities for investment in oil & gas fields in Russia. If there are new opportunities at the correct price, India is always interested in such opportunities.”

    SPIEF is an annual international forum dedicated to economic and business issues. It attracts thousands of participants, including political and business leaders, leading scientists, public figures, and members of the media from all over the world. The Forum mainly discusses the most pressing issues facing Russia and the world.

    During the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Moscow in December 2015, both countries agreed to further enhance cooperation in the oil and gas sector. This paved way for ONGC Videsh Ltd (OVL) and Rosneft to complete formalities for acquisition of 15% stake by OVL in Vankorneft, which is a subsidiary of Rosneft.

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    Tags:
    Oil, gas, St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) 2016, Rosneft, India
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