Petronet LNG to ink 1.25 mn tn deal with Algeria

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New Delhi, Sept 28: Petronet LNG will soon sign a deal with Algerian national gas company Sonatrach to import 1.25 million tonnes of liquefied natural gas annually.

''Talks are on and we are going to sign the 25-year deal soon,'' Ambassador to Republic of Algeria Dr Noureddine Bardad-Didj told reporters here today in a seminar.

The 4.5- million-tonne LNG export terminal would come up by 2011, he added.

The diplomat said Algeria holds world's fifth largest gas reserves and is the fourth largest exporter of LNG (behind Indonesia, Malaysia and Qatar), exporting around 13 per cent of the world's total.

Besides, Petronet is also in talks to import LNG from the Chevron-operated Gorgon liquefaction project in Australia. Volumes are expected to come from the 25 per cent capacity share being marketed by partner Exxon Mobil.

Petronet has frozen most of the agreements for import of 2.5 million tonnes of LNG from Gorgon and is expected to sign a sale purchase agreement (SPA) early next year.

Gas Authority of India Ltd (GAIL) is also likely to participate in 13 billion dollar gas pipeline project which Algeria is undertaking, the diplomat said.

''There is huge potential of investments in our gas and oil fields,'' he said, and invited Indian companies to explore the vast reserves in Algeria.

Sonatrach produces 62 billion cubic metres a year of LNG and expects output of 85 billion cubic metres by 2010.

Petronet LNG is a joint venture of four national oil companies such as ONGC, IOCL, GAIL and BPCL.


UNI

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