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India offers Kuwait stake in petrochemical plants

Last Updated: Monday, March 11, 2013 - 18:44

New Delhi: India on Monday offered Kuwait a stake in state-owned ONGC's Rs 21,396-crore petrochemical plant at Dahej in Gujarat and in IOC's proposed chemical unit at Paradip as it looks to strength ties with the oil rich nation.

Petroleum Minister M Veerappa Moily renewed the offer of a stake in the mega petrochemical plants being built on the west and east coast to the visiting Kuwati Minister for Al-Diwan Al-Amiri Affairs Sheikh Nasser Sabah Al-Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, official sources said here.

The visiting minister, who is the eldest son of Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, Amir of Kuwait, invited officials to visit Kuwait to discuss the offer threadbare.

Oil & Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) is keen to get an overseas major who can either bring in technology or marketing support for its Dahej plant that would be built by year end.

ONGC holds 26 percent stake in ONGC Petro-additions Ltd, the special purpose vehicle (SPV) formed for setting up the chemical complex at the Dahej special economic zone (SEZ). Five percent stake is with the Gujarat State Petroleum Corp (GSPC) and state-owned gas utility GAIL India has 15.5 percent. The remaining 53.5 percent equity valued at Rs 3,434.05 crore is yet to be tied up.

Also offered was a stake in the petrochemical plant ONGC is building at Mangalore and Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd's (BPCL) proposed chemical unit at Kochi in Kerala.

The Gulf nation's national oil company Kuwait Petroleum Corp (KPC) was also offered a stake in the 1-million tons petrochemical plant that was split from the Rs 29,777-crore refinery at Paradip for building in future, they said.

The chemical plant would be build after the 15 million-tons-a-year refinery is commissioned this year as IOC faced cash crunch in view of selling subsidised fuel.

Kuwait is India's third largest supplier of crude oil, with supply of 17.70 million tons of crude oil in 2011-12.

"We see Kuwait as an important long-term partner for our every-growing energy needs and are keen to strengthen cooperation with Kuwait in the energy sector through joint ventures in the hydrocarbon sector in the upstream as well as downstream sectors," Moily said at the meeting.

"We are keen to strengthen our cooperation in the hydrocarbon sector beyond buying of crude oil and hope that Kuwait invests in our petrochemical projects like ONGC's project at Mangalore," he said.

Moily invited Kuwait investment in the LNG terminals coming up on east and west coast as well as offered capacity in the strategic oil storages India is building at Visakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh and Mangalore and Padur in Karanataka.


First Published: Monday, March 11, 2013 - 18:44
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