ONGC under pressure on marginal fields

Vol 11, PW 8 (23 Aug 07) News in Brief

ONGC is under pressure from the oil ministry to offer its dormant marginal fields to foreign and Indian private contractors.

PETROWATCH learns that on August 9th oil secretary MS Srinivasan told an ONGC quarterly performance review meeting that it makes no sense for ONGC to hold on to the fields if it can’t make money from them. ONGC is believed to be sitting on 153 marginal fields: 79 onshore and 74 offshore.

Contacted by this report, a senior ONGC source welcomed the ministry initiative. “If the government thinks ONGC is unable to monetise these fields and it wants to offer them to others,â€‌ he said, “then we have no problem with that.

â€‌ He adds: “When Panna, Mukta and Tapti were given to Enron and Reliance they were considered to be â€کmarginal’ fields. But today they are money spinners.

â€‌ In the past, ONGC has awarded service contracts to develop its marginal fields to Prize Petroleum and Assam Company but recent tenders have attracted little interest.

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