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Decide on gas block by Dec-end: Petropars to ONGC

Petropars has offered the state-owned oil major and the Hinduja Group 40 per cent stake in the development of Phase-12 of the giant South Pars gas field.

twitter-logoPTI | November 4, 2010 | Updated 13:12 IST

Iranian oil firm Petropars has set a year-end deadline for ONGC-Hinduja consortium to decide on participation in a $7.5-billion gas field in the Persian Gulf.

Petropars has offered Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) and the Hinduja group 40 per cent stake in the development of Phase-12 of the giant South Pars gas field.

"The technical due diligence has been completed by ONGC. Financials and project model have been gone through," Petropars' G R Manouchehri said, on the sidelines of the Petrotech-2010 oil & gas conference here.

"We are waiting for ONGC's decision," he said.

The South Pars Phase-12 (SP-12) project will produce 3 billion cubic feet per day of gas from 2014, two-third of which will be converted into liquefied natural gas (LNG) for exports. The remaining 1 billion cubic feet per day will be for domestic consumption in Iran.

Besides, SP-12 will also produce 120,000 barrels per day of condensate and other products like LPG and ethane, Manouchehri added.

The gas from the project will be taken by Iran-LNG, which is building a $5 billion plant at Tombak Port by 2011 to turn it into liquid state, so that it can be shipped in cryogenic vessels. "Indians companies can take stake in the liquefication plant and buy LNG," he said.

The gas from SP-12 will be sufficient for making 10 million tonnes of LNG, 60 per cent of which can go to India.

"We have given ONGC a three-month deadline to respond (on participating in SP-12). One month has already passed," he said. "We are hopeful they will join the project."

Indian companies may be deterring from investing in Iran's oil and gas sector because of US sanctions. ONGC Videsh, the overseas investment arm of ONGC, will need a waiver or special dispensation from US to not only invest in SP-12 but also in the Farsi gas field in Iran.

Asked if ONGC may be deterring because of the same, Manouchehri said: "For sure (the delay) is not technical."

Industry sources said ONGC and Hindujas have not reached an agreement on how the SP-12 stake should be split between them. London-based Hindujas want the 40 per cent interest to be split equally, while the state-owned firm is willing to concede only one-fourth.

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