PY-3 helicopter

Vol 14, PW 23 (19 May 11) News in Brief

UK-listed Hardy Oil & Gas is set to extend a helicopter service contract at the offshore Chennai PY-3 field, much to the dismay of partner ONGC.

Hardy, we hear, plans to extend the contract of Chennai-based Swajas Air Charters for three months from July 1. ONGC is furious.

For several months it has been insisting on a fresh tender to hire helicopter services for PY-3 and sent Hardy an angry letter on April 21 reiterating this demand, but received no reply. ONGC holds a 40% stake at PY-3 and is frustrated that Hardy doesn’t seem to be taking seriously its calls to shift the PY-3 helicopter base from Chennai to Puducherry to save OPEX costs: it takes a helicopter just 15 minutes to fly to PY-3 from Puducherry, we learn, but from Chennai the journey takes 55 minutes.

When contacted, a Hardy source confirms no fresh helicopter tender has yet been issued and “no decision has been taken on the way forward.” Hardy holds 18% at PY-3 while HOEC and Tata Petrodyne each hold 21%.