BG sends Giordano and Chapman to resolve PMT row

Vol 6, PW 15 (25 Sep 02) News in Brief

Richard Giordano, non-executive chairman of British Gas, and Frank Chapman, CEO, are scheduled in India next month to try to resolve the damaging row with ONGC and Reliance over operatorship at Panna, Mukta and Tapti.

Meetings are planned with oil minister Ram Naik, Shastri Bhawan bureaucrats and top management at ONGC and Reliance. "Let us see what new proposals they bring with them," responds ONGC.

"Only then can we comment." In July Chapman returned to the UK empty-handed when ONGC chairman Subir Raha refused to meet him. ONGC and Reliance are firm they will settle for nothing less than joint operatorship of PMT.

"BG told us that Enron (the earlier operator) used to cream off 20% of the budgeted expenses," adds ONGC. "How can we trust that they will not do the same If they have nothing to hide why are they scared of joint operatorship"

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