The first equity cargo of about 6,90,000 barrels of Das Blend crude oil of ONGC Videsh Ltd. (OVL) from Lower Zakum oilfield in Abu Dhabi arrived at New Mangalore Port on Friday. The OVL, a wholly owned subsidiary of ONGC, has sold the crude oil to Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemical Ltd., the other subsidiary of ONGC, for refining. The crude is part of hydrocarbon resource that Abu Dhabhi has provided access to India following agreements signed in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi on February 10. The OVL-led Indian consortium acquired 10% productive index in the Lower Zakum Concession through its Dutch Joint Venture Company — Falcon Oil and Gas BV. The concessional agreement was for 40 years.
Talking to reporters here on Friday, ONGC Chairman Shashi Shanker said arrival of OVL’s equity crude to MRPL for refining was a step towards ensuring India’s energy security needs. Affirming ONGC group’s commitment to enhancing country’s energy security needs, Mr. Shanker said: “Since MRPL is our company in the downstream business, OVL has sold the crude to them.” The OVL would consider selling the crude to other refiners as well, he said. Mr. Shanker said the Das Blend crude was best positioned among the OVL portfolio of equity crude flows to India. This was the first time that the Indian oil and gas companies were given a stake in development of hydrocarbon resources in Abu Dhabi, he said.
Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of OVL, Narendra K. Verma, said OVL will give preference to MRPL and HPCL. He said shipping distance and voyage time to the West Coast was short from where the crude would be lifted in wide range of parcel sizes.