The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
Email This Page
ONGC-Videsh seals Sudan deal

New Delhi, March 13: In a major step to enhance the country’s energy security, ONGC-Videsh has acquired a 25 per cent stake in the Greater Nile oilfield in Sudan from Talisman Energy of Canada for $ 720 million.

Petroleum minister Ram Naik said today that the deal with Talisman will come into effect from September 1, 2002, as a result of which $ 50 million has already accrued to ONGC-Videsh. The net price paid to Talisman on Wednesday was, therefore, $ 670 million.

The oilfield is producing around 2,40,000 to 2,60,000 barrels of oil per day and the Indian share will come to over 3 million tonnes per annum.

The oil from the inland field is transported to the marine terminal at Port Sudan through a 1,504 km-long buried pipeline for sale to buyers. The oil is currently being sold at a little over $ 30 per barrel.

However, ONGC-Videsh has the right to divert this oil to India. ONGC chairman Subir Raha said the downstream Indian oil companies have already been provided with the detailed composition of the oil so that they can purchase it if they want. He said the Indian companies were already importing a large quantity of sweet crude from Nigeria.

ONGC owns equity in the Sudan oilfield and this could turn out to be a more reliable source. The other partners in the oilfield are China National Petroleum Corporation, Petronas of Malaysia and Sudapet, a wholly-owned government company of Sudan.

Naik said the ONGC share in the Greater Nile oilfield constitutes around 10 per cent of the country’s domestic output of crude and has added to the oil security of the country.

Email This Page