Iran open to discuss with India change of gas delivery point

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New Delhi, Jul 1 (UNI) In a significant development relating to the 7.6 billion dollar Iran-Pakistan-India (IPI) pipeline, Iran today expressed its willingness to consider favourably India's request for changing the gas delivery point from Iran-Pakistan border to Pakistan-India border.

This was conveyed to Petroleum Minister Murli Deora by Iran Oil Minister GholamHossein Nozari when the two leaders met on the sidelines of the 19th World Petroleum Congress at Madrid in Spain.

Mr Nozari said Iran was optimistic about implementation of IPI gas pipeline project, citing the progress made by India and Pakistan in settling outstanding bilateral issues.

Mr Deora reiterated India's commitment to speedy implementation of the IPI pipeline project, saying the delivery point issue will be soon be discussed with Iran.

Mr Nozari also said Iran is open to the proposal of ONGC to jointly develop LNG project in Iran with a complete chain by setting up an LNG regassified complex in India with Iranian participation, an official statement said here.

He said the commerciality of the project is under consideration and a decision will be taken soon in respect of approving development plan for Farsi block with ONGC Videsh Ltd as operator (40 per cent), Indian Oil Corporation (40 per cent) and Oil India Ltd (20 per cent).

Expressing satisfaction on the progress made in resolving outstanding issues, Mr Deora said most of the issues have been settled and some remaining issues will be discussed in the forthcoming trilateral meeting to be held in Tehran.

Welcoming the GAIL's proposal for developing city gas distribution projects in Iran, Iran has asked GAIL to submit a proposal in this regard.

In addition, GAIL conveyed its interest in setting up petrochemicals projects in Iran, besides participating in development of Iranian pipeline infrastructure.

Earlier, in a meeting with Colombian Minister of Mines and Energy Hernan Martinez Torres, Mr Deora proposed ONGC's participation in improving oil recovery from the existing fields in Colombia.

Mr Torres conveyed Colombia's keen interest in utilising the expertise of ONGC in implementing Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) and Improved Oil Recovery (IOR) projects.

The two Ministers also reviewed the existing projects involving ONGC Videsh in a producing field and three exploration blocks and expressed satisfaction on the progress in these projects.

Mr Deora has invited Mr Torres to visit India for taking first hand view of developments in the Indian oil and gas sector.

The Minister was accompanied by Petroelum Secretary M S Srinviasan, Indian Ambassador to Spain Sujata Mehta, ONGC CMD R S Sharma, OVL MD R S Butola and EIL CMD Mukul Rothagi.

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