IOC ties up with Korea Gas for LNG venture

NEW DELHI (TIP): Flagship refiner IndianOil Corporation on Wednesday signed an MoU with Korea Gas Corporation (Kogas) to jointly explore opportunities in oil and gas, including liquid gas transported in ships or LNG. “IOC and Kogas signed an MoU for joint participation in exploration and production of gas and oil at the global level and developing natural gas infrastructure projects and LNG sourcing,” company’s director (business development) A M K Sinha said on the sidelines of Petrotech 2012 conference.

The team of Kogas executives under its executive vice-president (LNG) Hyun Kun Shin met IndianOil chairman R S Butola who emphasized the need for time-bound progress in areas identified in the MoU. Butola later said IOC was looking at Kogas’ strength for LNG swaps. One of the possibilities was to source LNG from US through Kogas. Since US laws bar gas exports to non-FTA countries, Indian companies are barred from accessing US gas.

But Korea being a free trade partner of US, Kogas imports LNG from US, which can be swapped. Kogas is the national gas company of Korea and the world’s largest single importer of LNG, clocking about 33 million tonnes in 2011. Kogas is the developer, owner and operator of three large-scale LNG receiving terminals as well as an extensive nationwide pipeline network in Korea. It has equity investments in LNG liquefaction projects and 20 overseas E&P projects and has lined up LNG sourcing contracts from several countries.

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