GAIL (India), Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) and ONGC Videsh Limited (OVL) have expressed their willingness to source LNG on long- and medium-term basis from existing and upcoming LNG liquefaction terminals, including for the Ennore LNG terminal, in Russia.

Senior officials in the Petroleum Ministry said the issue was likely to come up for discussion during the upcoming visit of the Russian President, Vladimir Putin, to India in October. It is understood that Russia is considering development of greenfield LNG projects on the Eastern Coast of Vladivostok and capacity expansion of its existing Shakhalin-2 project to cater to Asian LNG markets. “GAIL has expressed its willingness to explore opportunities for equity participation in LNG liquefaction terminals integrated with upstream E&P blocks,’’ an official said.

OVL has been actively pursuing the invitation extended to it by the Russian Government for participation in the Yamal Peninsula Gas project. A technical team comprising GAIL, OVL and Petronet LNG officials visited Russia and held detailed discussions with Novatek, a Russian company.

“In view of the fact that Yamal LNG is a pilot project in which Novatek has tried to externalise the risk associated with such projects bypassing the same to foreign partners, the Indian companies would require more comfort before taking a decision to enter into the project,” the official added.

Sistema and OVL are now engaged in discussions on the submission of adequate data by Sistema on Bashneft to enable OVL to carry out requisite due-diligence before submission of a bid. Flow of information from Sistema for due diligence is grossly inadequate and slow which is delaying the decision making at OVL’s end.

GAIL and IOC have expressed long and medium term interest in sourcing LNG from existing and upcoming liquefaction terminals. IOC is pursuing a 5 million metric tonnes per annum LNG import and re-gasification terminal at Ennore, Tamil Nadu.

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