New Delhi: Indian state-run firms will scout for oil and gas assets in Uzbekistan and Azerbaijan during a week-long visit by commerce minister Jairam Ramesh, starting from 10 April.
ONGC Videsh Ltd., the overseas investment arm of Oil and Natural Gas Corp has identified some prospects in Azerbaijan.
Gas transportation firm Gail (India) Ltd has identified four natural gas exploration and production blocks in Uzbekistan which happens to be one of the top natural gas producing countries in the world.
ONGC Videsh, whose Managing Director R.S. Butola is accompanying the minister, is also interested in investing in gas fields in Uzbekistan.
Azerbaijan has re-emerged as a major oil supplier with the commissioning of Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline, the world’s second longest oil pipeline connecting rich Caspian Sea oil reserves with the Mediterranean Sea.
In Tashkent, the commerce minister along with senior Gail officials will hold talks with the Uzbek government on petrochemicals, liquefied petroleum gas and city gas distribution projects identified by Gail.
Other companies that will accompany the minister are State Trading Corp. National Mineral Development Corp. and MMTC Ltd. STC is also exploring a $10 mn (Rs45 crore) investment in Uzbekistan for cotton-seed processing.
According to an official statement, Rites, a unit of state-owned Indian Railways, has made proposals for modernizing and expanding Uzbekistan’s railway network.