India has reached out to UK-based investors to attract international public-private-partnerships (PPP) in the country's oil and gas sector with a roadshow in London.
The Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, along with the Directorate General of Hydrocarbon (DGH), held an interactive session on Monday which attracted around 125 participants.
The session was aimed at sharing the new policy and regulatory regime in India and details of investment opportunities in the field of oil and natural gas exploration and production (E&P).
"India is a bright spot in the world economic order, where demand for petroleum products is on the rise. The primary energy demand of the country will almost double in the next 12 years. This roadshow is a call to involve international partners in this journey," said HPS Ahuja, CEO and Managing Director of Indian Strategic Petroleum Reserves Limited (ISPR).
Earlier this year, Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan had launched Bid Round-II under Discovered Small Field Policy (DSF) and Open Acreage Licensing Policy (OALP) for competitive bidding.
Under OALP Bid Round II, 14 blocks will be offered with a total area of 29,233 sq km and under DSF Bid Round II, 25 contract areas are on offer covering 59 discovered oil and gas fields, spread over 3,000 sq km, the ministry said.
The DSF-II and OALP-II Bid Rounds are aligned to India's Hydrocarbon Exploration and Licensing Policy (HELP), which adopts the Revenue Sharing Model in an effort to improve ease of doing business in India's E&P sector.
"It comes with attractive fiscal terms like reduced royalty rates and no cess, a single license for all hydrocarbons, pricing and marketing freedom, freedom to explore throughout the contract period, no signing bonus and provision for sharing of common facilities," the ministry said in a statement.
Manish Singh, Minister (Economic) at the High Commission of India in London, inaugurated the Investment Promotional Event for Exploration and Production Opportunities in London, which was chaired by VP Joy, Director General, DGH.
Besides a presentation for UK investors on the various opportunities in store, an overview of the Indian taxation regime was provided by KPMG – as knowledge partners.
Under Phase I SPR, ISPRL said it has successfully created 5.33 MMT of crude oil inventory storage installations in underground mined rock caverns at three locations namely Visakhapatnam (1.33 MMT), Mangalore (1.5 MMT) and Padur (2.5 MMT).
In line with the integrated energy policy of the Indian government, which calls for 90 days' reserves, the Union Cabinet accorded "in principle" approval for Phase-II SPR programme, which involves the creation of additional 6.5 MMT of storage inventory entailing underground mined rock cavern storages and associated facilities at Chandikhol, Odisha (4.0 MMT) and Padur-II, Karnataka (2.5. MMT).
"In order to explore feasibility of commercialisation of the Phase I SPR at Padur (2.5 MMT) and the planned Phase II SPRs at Chandikhol, Odisha (4.0 MMT) and Padur II, Karnataka (2.5 MMT), it is planned to solicit investment partners and pursue the initiatives of Phase II SPRs through PPP mode of implementation for construction, filling, and operation respectively and also filling and operation of the existing Phase I SPR at Padur," ISPR said in a statement.
It added: "Since India has the second-largest refining capacity in Asia and fourth-largest in the world, these storage inventories would offer a unique opportunity for various stakeholders and investors including construction companies, financing institutions, trading firms, developers, oil & gas companies etc to explore the possibility of participating in the process.
"Given the vantage coastline of India, the storage locations fall on the transhipment routes of crude oil from the Middle East source countries to the Far East consuming nations."
Based on the response of investors around the world, a suitable PPP model will be prepared for international competitive bidding by an individual organisation or through joint venture partners.
(With inputs from agencies.)