As part of India’s push for a gas based economy, ExxonMobil, one of the world’s largest publicly-traded energy firms inked a letter of cooperation with US’ Chart Industries Inc. and state run Indian Oil Corporation Ltd (IOCL) on Monday for supplying liquified natural gas (LNG) by by road, rail and waterways to areas not connected by physical pipelines.
This will help provide cleaner fuel’s access in regions where the gas grid is not present. Gas accounts for around 6.2% of India’s primary energy mix against the global average of 24%. The government plans to increase this to 15% by 2030. India’s gas demand is expected to be driven by fertilizer, power, city gas distribution and steel sectors.
“ExxonMobil India LNG Limited has signed a Letter of Cooperation with Indian Oil Corporation Limited and Chart Energy & Chemicals Inc., to establish a system of transportation infrastructure to expand gas access in India. Virtual pipeline systems deliver liquefied natural gas by road, rail and waterways to areas not connected by physical pipelines," ExxonMobil said in a statement on Monday.
Mint earlier reported about the energy major’s plans for transporting gas through containers during the US President Donald Trump’s visit to India.
“The parties will implement a gas infrastructure initiative that leverages LNG ISO intermodal containers to move gas as a reliable, cleaner and cost-effective fuel," the statement added.
India is also exploring to secure an interest in ExxonMobil operated Guyana’s oilfields that are being hailed as one of the world’s largest oil finds in recent times.
This comes in the backdrop of US pitching itself as a preferred energy partner to India. India is the world’s third-largest oil importer and the fourth-largest buyer of liquefied natural gas (LNG). The country is a key Asian refining hub, with an installed capacity of more than 249.4 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) through 23 refineries.
Given the instability in the energy markets following the tensions in the Persian Gulf and the Coronavirus outbreak, the US shale oil and gas production plays an important role in bringing global price stability. US has also emerged as a growing source for oil and gas for energy import dependent India with the total value of crude and LNG imports from the US estimated at around $6.7 billion.
With state-run Petronet LNG Ltd plans to invest in Tellurian Inc’s US Gulf Coast project, energy has cemented its place as the new bridge in the India-US bilateral relationship.