New Delhi: The state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corp. Ltd (ONGC) plans to invite expressions of interest (EoI) shortly from potential partners in a joint venture for generating 6.5 gigawatts (GW) of renewable energy such as wind and solar power, chairman and managing director Sudhir Vasudeva said.

The venture may provide a boost to renewable energy generation in the country.

In addition, the explorer also plans to sign an agreement with state-owned Nuclear Power Corp. of India Ltd for setting up six nuclear plants, each with a capacity of 1,740 MW, Vasudeva said in an announcement made at the presentation of the company’s annual and quarterly results.

ONGC aims to generate 30% of its revenue from non-exploration and production business by 2030.

The explorer, which is also mulling fuel retail plans, said net profit decreased 16.7% in the fiscal year ended 31 March to 20,926 crore on account of its subsidy burden—for supplying crude at a discount to oil marketing companies—hitting a record 49,421 crore. Revenue increased 8.4% to 82,552 crore.

According to the petroleum ministry, the total under-recoveries—the difference between market price and fuel retail price—to be borne by oil marketers this fiscal are expected to be around 80,000 crore.

ONGC’s gross and net realization per barrel of crude was $110.74 and $47.85 per barrel, respectively.

The public sector unit also registered a 40% dip in net profit for the quarter ended 31 March to 3,387 crore from 5,644 crore in the year-ago period. ONGC’s revenue in the fourth quarter increased 13.1% to 21,460 crore. Quarterly profit declined because of a payout of 2,500 crore toward cess and royalty, a provision of around 1,700 crore made for employee expenses, among other factors, finance director A.K. Banerjee said.

The company’s annual cess burden went up by 4,214 crore to 9,997 crore.

“Our cash reserves are coming down. It’s worrying," Vasudeva said.

The company has planned capital expenditure of 35,049 crore in the current fiscal and a capex of 2.64 trillion in the 12th plan (2012-17).

ONGC produced 26.12 million tonnes (mt) of crude in the year, compared to 26.92 mt in the previous fiscal. Gas production fell to 25.33 billion cubic metre (bcm) of gas from 25.51 bcm last fiscal.

The decrease in crude production is primarily due to the fall in production in Sudan, South Sudan and Syria, Vasudeva said.

He also confirmed that ONGC is in talks with Royal Dutch Shell plc for joint participation across the hydrocarbon value chain in upstream, mid stream and down activities.

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