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Mr. Murli Deora, Minister of Petroleum & Natural Gas and Mr. Samuel W. Bodman, US Energy Secretary discuss cooperation in hydrocarbon

New Delhi
March 20, 2007
(Press Information Bureau)

The Minister of Petroleum & Natural Gas Shri Murli Deora, here today held discussions with Mr. Samuel W. Bodman, US Energy Secretary under the ongoing Indo-US Energy Dialogue.

The Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas has ongoing MOUs and agreements with the US Government. The discussions reviewed progress under the MOUs including areas of safety in oil and gas, cooperation in strategic storage, infrastructure, R&D, gas hydrates and information exchange. Shri Murli Deora highlighted the importance India attaches to the ongoing Indo-US energy dialogue.

Shri Deora said that India is keen to learn from the American experience in bio-diesel and bio-fuels as well as in the development of hydrogen as a fuel for the future. He pointed out that India has also taken significant initiatives in harnessing alternative fuel sources including bio-fuels. The Ethanol Blended Petrol Programme has been revived with 5% blend in petrol. Shri Deora also called for faster progress in the area of cooperation in safety of oil and gas operations for which the Oil Industry Safety Directorate of India and Minerals Management Services of U.S.A. have an MOU. 

Referring to the tremendous success of offering exploration blocks under NELP, Shri Murli Deora emphasized the need for greater participation of American oil majors particularly in the light of India gaining wide acceptance as important investment destination and with increased prospectivity of finding hydrocarbons. He informed that the American oil companies could take advantage of the next offer of exploration blocks under NELP-VII which would be launched soon. 

Both sides expressed satisfaction with the progress made and agreed to hasten progress through the Joint Working Group mechanism already institutionalized.