Media reports say that Indian public sector giant ONGC wants to team up with Russian petroleum industry leader Rosneft in the Russian Arctic. A formal agreement is being sought by ONGC; the company is reported to have expressed interest in participating in one of Rosneft's international partnerships in the Kara and Barents Seas.
The Indian company wants the Russian State owned company to reduce its planned stake in projects with ExxonMobil, Eni and Statoil to "give room for third partners," says The Barent's observer. ONGC is also believed to be interested in new ventures in the region in alliance with Rosneft. ONGC Videsh Ltd., the company's international subsidiary has confirmed its interest.
Observers point out that ONGC- that produces about 77 percent of India's crude oil and around 81 percent of its natural gas- does not have experience in the Arctic. It's willingness to accept a lower stake, as reported in Indian newspapers, may be indicative of a desire to develop expertise in a region that could hold 22% of the world's undiscovered recoverable sources- 90 billion barrels of oil and 1670 trillion cubic feet of gas, as per US estimates. Some experts say that anywhere between $250 billion and $400 billion of investment will be needed in the Arctic if these have to be tapped.