ONGC strikes oil, gas in three new blocks: report

The government-owned Oil & Natural Gas Corporation has made three oil and gas discoveries, according to a report in The Economic Times.

The public sector oil giant is saide to have found oil in the Cambay basin, oil and gas in Matar area in Vadodara district in Gujarat and gas in the Krishna-Godavari basin, the paper said quoting two persons close to the development as saying.

While the find in the KG basin find is of natural gas, oil has been found in Charada in the Cambey basin. Matar area in Vadodara district saw oil and gas struck from two intervals.

The discoveries are in the preliminary stage and reserve estimates of these discoveries are not yet known, one of the sources said. ONGC declined to comment officially on the report.

In another development, it has been reported that the government may hike the price of natural gas produced by ONGC and Oil India Ltd by over 17 per cent and index it to inflation rate to help the two firms cut losses on selling fuel below cost.

According to The Indian Express, the petroleum ministry has prepared a draft cabinet note for raising prices of natural gas produced by ONGC from fields given to it on nomination basis to Rs3,765 per thousand cubic metres (or $1.98 per million British thermal unit) from the current Rs3,200 per 1,000 cu m ($1.68 per mmBtu).

For OIL, the gas price has been proposed at Rs4,205 per 1,000 cu m, the paper quoted a senior ministry official as saying.

ONGC currently loses about Rs3,000 crore in revenues annually on selling gas from fields like Bassein and Mumbai High at a government-capped price.