U.S. oil and gas companies, including Exxon Mobile, have shown keen interest to make investments in the Indian hydrocarbon sector, Union Petroleum Minister Murli Deora said here on Monday.

Mr. Deora, who had an interactive session with CEOs of U.S. oil and gas multinational companies in New York en route from Cancun, said he had long discussions with heads of such companies and cited his meeting with oil giant Exxon Chairman.

Petroleum Secretary S. Sundereshan, ONGC Chairman and Managing Director R. S. Sharma and Indian Oil Corporation Chairman B. M. Bansal had talks with the representatives of various companies to explore the possibility of making investments in India.

The response had been good and India hoped to clinch certain deals after consultations with both sides, Mr. Deora added.

Expressing concern over the increasing crude oil prices in the international markets, Mr. Deora said oil producing and consuming countries had to come around to the idea of providing energy at a reasonable and affordable price to the people of the world.

Cancun outcome

On the outcome of the Cancun meetings, Mr. Deora said he was happy that the U.S. Commodity Futures Trade Commission and regulators in the Britain had taken steps to put certain restrictions on the positions of the financial traders. “We do hope that there won't be extreme volatility and we think the producers also realise that it affects them very much. We are happy that everybody is aware that price volatility cannot continue,'' he added.