Mittal sees big prospects for ONGC Mittal Energy

Steel baron Lakshmi Mittal is optimistic of joint forays with ONGC in exploration and production (E&P) for oil across the world. ONGC Mittal Energy Ltd (OMEL), formed a year ago, is trying to set footholds in E&P business in 21 countries across the world.

Addressing a joint press conference with ONGC in New Delhi, Mittal sounded optimistic about the bids OMEL is going to make in the near future. "The Petrokazakhstan episode is not the end of the world for us", the chairman-designate of Arcelor-Mittal, known for his patience and perseverance, said.

In the coming years, the joint venture between Mittal and ONGC will contribute significantly to the energy security of India, he said, adding, that for the time being, OMEL will focus on E&P only.

OMEL registered significant growth in the first year of its formation itself. It has a producing asset in Syria. In May 2006, OMEL won two prosperous deepwater blocks in Nigeria - OPL 212 and OPL 209.

Nigeria is the largest African oil producer and ranks 11th in world with 2,580,000 barrels per day production in 2005.

The press conference, also attended by Mittal''s son Aditya, was called to thank prime minister Manmohan Singh, Mittal said.