State-run Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) and United Arab Emirates' investment firm Mubadala have decided to join hands to jointly invest in upstream projects in developing countries.

The in-principle agreement on such a move came after a bilateral meeting between the Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister, Veerappa Moily and UAE Energy Minister Suhail Mohhamed Al Mazrouei on the sidelines of Petrotech 2014 conference in Greater Noida.

An official statement issued in Greater Noida said that Mr. Al Mazrouei also showed keen interest in the proposal and felt that both the companies should soon meet to arrive at specific focus countries. Mr. Moily has taken the Petrotech conference as an occasion to launch the oil diplomacy initiatives with leading oil supplies and also seek to firm up relationships with various countries and entities in the direction of energy security for India.

He also said that Indian companies may participate in the future exploration and production opportunities and pointed out that the UAE is looking for raising rate of recovery from existing fields. Mr.Moily also felt the need for greater role of Engineers India Ltd (EIL) in the development of UAE’s oil sector. HPCL presented investment opportunities in its upcoming major refinery-cum petrochemical projects in Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh.

Similarly, in his meeting with Libyan Oil and Gas Minister Abdulbari A. Arousi the two Ministers expressed the need for increasing cooperation in terms of greater crude oil supply to India and in the field of upstream projects. ONGC Videsh Limited (OVL) proposed signing of MoU to provide institutional framework for exploring specific projects for cooperation. State-owned Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL) urged revival of the term contract for supply of crude oil to India. The Libyan Oil and Gas Minister assured to consider these issues and emphasised that Libya was keen to increase the cooperation with India.

Mr. Moily also held bilateral meetings with Shaikh Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Kahlifa, Minister of Finance and in-charge of National Oil and Gas Authority of Bahrain and Ms. Alison M Redford, Premier of Alberta, Canada. Both sides discussed various areas of cooperation. In fact, Ms. Redford was keen about investments by India oil companies In Alberta. She offered India to utilise their expertise in the area of shale gas. Indian side pointed out that India Oil Limited (OIL) has recently purchased a cargo of Canadian crude oil and are looking for sourcing more from Alberta in particular and from Canada in general. OVL expressed keen desire to learn from Canadian experience which could be useful in exploiting their Imperial Energy acreages in Russia.

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