Pradhan meets US Secy of Energy to review bilateral energy cooperation

| Updated: Jul 19, 2016 18:07 IST

New Delhi, July 19 (ANI): In an endeavour to review the bilateral energy cooperation between New Delhi and Washington, especially in oil and gas sector, Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan met US Secretary of Energy Dr Ernest Moniz in Washington. During the meeting held yesterday, the two sides agreed to enhance institutional and technical cooperation in assessment and reassessment of conventional and unconventional hydrocarbon reserves in India, both in onshore and offshore. They also agreed to work on new technologies in development of bio-fuel as well as development of petroleum storage. For progress in cooperation in concrete areas, the two ministers agreed on the need for regular meetings of officials and experts. The bilateral energy cooperation between the two countries had started in the form of energy dialogue in 2005 under which oil and gas is also discussed. Over the last decade, several areas of interest for cooperation like technology for production from marginal fields, shale structures, developing gas pipeline network, improving refinery efficiency among others have been identified. It may be noted that the GAIL has signed a contract for import of LNG from the US to the tune of 5.8 Million Metric Tons (MMT) per year from the end of 2017. The Indian companies have also invested in shale oil and gas projects in the US, in which the GAIL has 20 percent equity in Eagle Ford basin, whereas the IOC and OIL have 10 percent equity in Niobrara basin. Several issues, including energy cooperation, were discussed between the two sides earlier in June 2016 during Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to the US. During the Prime Minister's visit, an MoU for cooperation in gas hydrates was also renewed for another period of five years. An earlier MoU on the same issue had expired in 2013. On the margins, Pradhan also received US Special Envoy and Coordinator for International Energy Affairs Amos Hochstein. He also addressed a gathering of business leaders, energy experts and senior US Government officials organised by Daniel Yergin, Vice President of (Information Handling Services) IHS. (ANI)