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India in talks with Rosneft for Vostok stake

India in talks with Rosneft for Vostok stake

03 Sep 2021

A consortium of Indian state-owned oil firms, including and , are in preliminary talks with Rosneft for a stake in Russia’s massive Vostok project, according to people familiar with the matter.

The consortium is likely to include more Indian state firms, but it will be some time before a final deal is struck.

“Talks are at a very early stage and the companies are evaluating the project,” a person aware of the development said.

Rosneft CEO Igor Sechin met Indian oil minister Hardeep Singh Puri, who is in Russia for an economic forum, and discussed the Vostok Oil project.

“Igor Sechin took Hardeep Singh Puri through key parameters of the project and its competitive strengths,” Rosneft said in a statement on Thursday.

Rosneft is in talks with multiple players for investments in Vostok.

Commodities trader Trafigura has a 10% stake in Vostok.

The Indian side did not issue any statement on Vostok talks.

“Look forward to further strengthening strategic cooperation across the entire value chain of the energy sector with Russia,” Puri tweeted on Thursday after meeting Russian energy minister Nikolai Shulginov and executives of Russian energy companies.

Vostok is one of the biggest projects in Russia and is expected to produce 115 million tonnes of oil by 2033, as per Rosneft. It comprises 52 licence areas with 13 oil and gas fields located within their boundaries, including some – Vankor, Suzun, Tagul, and Lodochnoe fields – developed with participation from the Indian partners, according to the statement.

The consortium of ONGC, Oil India, Indian Oil and

owns 49.9% in Vankor while the consortium of Oil India, Indian Oil and BPCL owns 29.9% in Taas-Yuryakh fields. The resource base of the Vostok project is more than 6 billion tonnes of sweet crude with a low sulphur content of 0.01-0.04%, according to Rosneft.