India, Iran tie up gas field deal

India and Iran aim to strike a deal by March to develop an Iranian gas field with estimated in-place reserves of 18.75 trillion cubic feet, the Indian government said in a statement on Wednesday.

A consortium headed by ONGC Videsh Ltd (OVL), the overseas investment arm of Indian explorer Oil and Natural Gas Corp, discovered the Farzad B gas field in the Farsi offshore block in 2008, Reuters reported.

The consortium, which also includes Oil India and Indian Oil Corp, could not obtain permission to develop the field due to Western sanctions against Iran’s nuclear energy program, but those sanctions were removed earlier this year.

OVL is preparing a master plan for development of the gas field, while also working on a pricing formula, the statement said.

India is the second largest buyer of Iranian oil after China, and New Delhi is seeking ways to deepen trade ties with Tehran now that sanctions have been lifted.

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