India's oil PSUs to acquire 49.9% in Russia's Vankor oil cluster

A consortium of state-owned oil companies ONGC Videsh Ltd, Oil India Ltd, Indian Oil Corporation Ltd and Bharat PetroResources today signed a batch of agreements with Russia's state-run oil giant Rosneft to increase India's participation in the Siberian oil and gas fields.

ONGC Videsh, the overseas investment arm of ONGC, signed an MoU with Rosneft to raise its stake in the Vankor cluster in Siberia to 26 per cent from the existing 15 per cent.

Indian Oil Corp, Oil India and Bharat PetroResources also signed another agreement with Rosneft to pick up 23.9 per cent stake in the same Vankor field.

Together with OVI, this would raise the overall stake of Indian companies in the oil field to 49.9 per cent.

The agreements were signed after a bilateral meeting between minister of state for petroleum and natural gas Dharmendra Pradhan with Igor Ivanovich Sechin, president and chairman of the management board and vice chairman of the board of directors of JSC Rosneft, Russia.

Vankorneft is a wholly owned subsidiary of Rosneft which operates Vankor Field in Russia. The Consortium comprises of Oil India Ltd, Indian Oil Corporation and Bharat Petro Resources Ltd.

Rosneft also signed a sale purchase agreement with IndianOil, Oil India and Bharat PetroResources to give the Indian companies a 29 per cent stake in the Taas-Yurikah fields in Eastern Siberia.

IndianOil and Oil India had signed an MoU with Rosneft in Russia last December. The latest sale purchase agreement adds Bharat PetroResources to the deal.

Bharat PetroResources is the exploration and production arm of Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd.

Pradhan in his meeting with Sechin described Russia as longstanding and time-tested partner of India. He expressed happiness that India and Russia have high levels of understanding and cooperation in almost all areas of the bilateral relationship.

Both expressed their commitment to work together to further strengthen the India-Russia relations in the hydrocarbon sector.