Qatar, which has the third largest gas reserve in the world, is among the countries shortlisted by Indian gas giant GAIL and Reliance Industries for the project, the Peninsula daily reported. The GAIL-Reliance delegation will be meeting senior officials from Qatar Petroleum (QP) while on their visit there. Other countries shortlisted for the project are Iran, Algeria, Nigeria and Russia-- all rich in natural gas, which serves as the main feedstock for any petrochemical facility. The largest Indian investment in the Gulf is a 1 billion dollars fertiliser joint venture plant in Oman near the Sur gas fields.
Qatar, whose gas reserves are the third-largest after Russia and Iran, would serve as an ideal destination for a petrochemical project. The country itself is investing heavily in petrochemicals as a corollary to its fast-expanding natural gas sector.
If GAIL and Reliance decide to do business here, it would be by far the biggest Indian project in the country. There is a large presence of Indian firms here. However, they are engaged in areas like contracting work and once the project they are involved in gets over, they have to leave.
Indian oil and gas companies are also casting their nets overseas, particularly in Africa, as the country seeks option for its domestic needs.