A consortium of three state-owned Indian oil companies is seeking investment in Russia's Rosneft’s Vostok project in a bid to gain energy security, a report has said.
Technical evaluation of 30 of 52 licence areas for the Vostok project has been completed by the consortium of ONGC Videsh (OVL), Indian Oil Corporation (IOCL) and Oil India (OIL), sources have told the Mint.
Moneycontrol could not independently verify the report.
Talks were in a preliminary stage and participatory interest would be based on the evaluation of technical data, the report cited a source as saying.
All will “depend on how much is recoverable. Once the reserves match with the operator’s numbers, then the commercial evaluation will happen”, the source said.
Besides Vostok, the consortium expressed interest in buying a stake in Novatek, which owns 60 percent in Russia’s liquefied natural gas project Arctic LNG-2, the source said, adding the two projects being looked at “are high priority”.
A spokesperson for Rosneft said the company was “negotiating entry with a number of potential partners”, including “a consortium of Indian companies”, which he did not name.
He, however, said Rosneft “could be” among the interest projects and that results would be out “in a timely manner”.
Vostok is part of a multi-pronged India-Russia energy partnership–energy sourcing and supplies, upstream investments and collaboration in petrochemicals. The two countries are also discussing long-term crude oil deals.
State oil companies have invested $16 billion in Russia, including O&G assets Sakhalin-1, Vankor and Taas-Yuryakh and East and East Siberia.
OVL said it would not comment on specific opportunities but the company “continues to consider, evaluate and process several global business opportunities”.
IOC, Novatek and the Petroleum and Natural Gas Ministry did not respond to queries. The report said OIL redirected comments to OVL.