India woos African nations for oil, gas

9 December 2011, Sweetcrude, NEW DELHI – Indian companies are keen to enter partnerships and form joint ventures for enhancing oil and gas exploration activities in African countries, Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas, S. Jaipal Reddy said Friday.

“Africa’s vast mineral and natural resources are largely untapped. Indian companies are interested to help in oil and gas exploration in Africa,” Reddy said at the 3rd India-Africa Hydrocarbons conference in New Delhi.

Addressing the inaugural session of the two-day conference, Reddy said: “Our preferred approach would be to go in for joint ventures with Africa’s national oil companies.”

The minister said Indian firms like Gas Authority of India Ltd (GAIL) and Indian Oil Corporation were interested in sourcing oil and liquefied natural gas on long-term basis from Africa.

He said Indian companies were also interested in exploring “possibilities of equity participation in existing or proposed LNG liquefication projects; business opportunities in gas processing and gas based petrochemical projects in Africa; and farm-in opportunities in producing gas blocks for conversion to LNG and dispatch to India”.

Reddy told reporters on the sidelines of the event that India was interested in increasing import of oil and natural gas from African countries. “There is no limit, We are interested to buy as much oil and gas from Africa as we can.”

India, he said, was keen to participate in exploration and production opportunities in the upstream sector of Nigeria, Angola, Ghana, Sudan, Algeria, Congo, Uganda, Mozambique, Chad, Gabon and Tanzania.

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