Papua New Guinea, India to Explore Cooperation in Energy

Papua New Guinea and India have agreed to pursue opportunities for cooperation in the hydrocarbon sector between the two countries. At a meeting between Foreign Minister Sam Abal and India's Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas Shri Jitin Prasada over the weekend, the two ministers stressed that there were vast opportunities which the corporate entities of two countries could harness for mutual benefit.

Prasada said Indian oil authorities like ONGC, GAIL, Petronet LNG and downstream companies were keen to take part in development of the hydrocarbon industry of PNG, with the entire hydro-carbon "value chain''. He said Indian companies were interested in participating in the upstream sector to carry out exploration and develop fields.

The minister said Indian companies had been engaged in talks with their counterparts and other operators in Papua New Guinea. Shri Prasada also said that India could render help in using vast natural gas reserves of the country by setting up liquefaction facilities as well as its transportation and source the LNG to India. He said the modern training facilities with Indian oil operators could be used to train hydrocarbon staff of Papua New Guinea for indigenous capacity building.

Meanwhile Mr Abal said, "India is not only a largest democracy but a country that has made substantial achievements in science and technology as well as education and health. These are areas PNG can look to India for cooperation.''

Abal while in India has raised the issues of concluding a technical cooperation agreement, an investment promotion and protection agreement, information and technology cooperation including a PNG satellite launch initiative, education and training and community college education to name a few.

BBC Monitoring. Copyright BBC.