India set to lose Farzad-B gas field in Iran as looks at domestic firms2Photo© timesofindia.indiatimes.com

India set to lose Farzad-B gas field in Iran as looks at domestic firms

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New Delhi: India has all but lost the ONGC Videsh Ltd-discovered Farzad-B gas field in the Persian Gulf after Iran decided to prefer domestic companies over foreign firms for development of the field, sources said. ONGC Videsh Ltd (OVL), the overseas investment arm of state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC), had in 2008 discovered a giant gas field in the Farsi offshore exploration block.

OVL and its partners had offered to invest up to USD 11 billion for development of the discovery, which was later named Farzad-B. After sitting over OVL's proposal for years, the National Iranian Oil Co (NIOC) informed the firm in February this year about its intention to conclude the contract for Farzad-B development with an Iranian company, sources with direct knowledge of the development said.

OVL, however, continued its engagements with NIOC over the development of the field and sought terms and conditions of the proposed contract for its evaluation, they said, adding that Iran has so far not responded to the Indian firm's request. Farzad-B holds total reserves of around 21.7 trillion cubic feet of which around 60 per cent is recoverable, and production is slated to be around 1.1 billion cubic feet per day.