BP chief Dudley, RIL's Ambani to meet ministers

BP's global chief executive is in India for two days, and along with Reliance Industries Ltd chairman Mukesh Ambani, is expected to call on petroleum minister Jaipal Reddy, commerce minister Anand Sharma, and possibly Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.CEO Robert Dudley will be in India for two days beginning tomorrow, reports CNBC-TV18.

BP has completed its $7.2-billion acquisition of a 30-per cent stake in 21 fields operated by RIL.

On Thursday, Dudley is scheduled to go to the Krishna-Godavari D6 block. RIL is counting on BP's expertise to ramp up the dwindling gas production from India's biggest field.

Meanwhile, reports say RIL investors want Ambani and Dudley to press Indian ministers to increase the price of natural gas from D6.

Reliance and BP want to develop smaller areas adjoining the main KG-D6 block while they chalk out a plan to reverse a slump in gas production from the reservoir. Drilling plans haven't been approved by Indian regulators and tests show increasing output from existing fields may be unviable at current prices, according to Bloomberg.

Manoj Warrier, a spokesman for Reliance in Mumbai, declined to comment on the meetings. An e-mail to BP's India office wasn't answered.