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State-run ONGC has signed a heads of agreement (HoA) with global petroleum giant ExxonMobil for deepwater exploration in the east and west coasts of India.  A statement from ONGC said that the collaboration areas focus on the Krishna Godavari and Cauvery Basins in the eastern offshore and the Kutch-Mumbai region in the western offshore.

"There has been a scientific exchange of exploration data in the last few years, which has led to this partnership. Collaboration between ONGC and ExxonMobil will be a strategic fit where ONGC’s knowledge and past experience in these areas will be coupled with ExxonMobil’s global insights," it said.

The secretary for the ministry of petroleum and natural gas, Pankaj Jain said that such partnerships between will bring tangible benefits in the entire energy value chain and open new vistas to exploration and production paradigm.

"This collaboration will boost our confidence in going further ahead in deepwater exploration in the east coast of India where the potential is quite significant," Jain said.

Rajesh Kumar Srivastava, Director (Exploration) at ONGC said, “With this strategic collaboration to pursue exploration, I look forward to long lasting partnership."

Through the discovery route, ONGC hopes to move to development wherein the inherent strength of ExxonMobil would be beneficial for efficient fast-track monetization, he added.

ExxonMobil India’s CEO & Lead Country Manager Monte K Dobson said: “It’s an exciting opportunity to collaborate with ONGC. Great things happen when the right people collaborate."

He added that 25% of the ExxonMobil brain power is currently engaged in evaluating Indian deepwater. "ExxonMobil is geared up to take this collaboration to the next level," he said.

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