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Energy Sector - 2

<b>Here is the latest from Plaats - usually it is a Subscription Site :</b>

[center]<b><span style='font-size:21pt;line-height:100%'>China completes plan to build second phase west-east gas pipeline</span></b>[/center]

<b>Hong Kong (Platts)--17Jan2008

<span style='color:blue'>Chinese state oil giant China National Petroleum Corporation has finalized plans for construction of China's second west-east natural gas pipeline, the state-run Xinhua News Agency reported Wednesday.</span></b>

Hou Chuangye, vice general manager of the PetroChina Natural Gas and Pipeline Company, part of CNPC, was quoted by Xinhua as telling the China LNG Conference 2008 this week that the project required an estimated investment of Yuan 143.49 billion ($19.66 billion).

<b><span style='color:red'>The second west-east trunk line will run for 4,945 km (3,070 miles) from Khorgos in northwestern China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, then eastward to Gansu province, where it will converge with the currently operational first west-east pipeline. It will then turn southeast through Shanxi, Henan, and Jiangxi provinces to end in Guangzhou, capital city of southern China's Guangdong province.

The new pipeline system, consisting of one trunk line and eight sub-lines, is expected to be officially launched in 2010 with a designed natural gas transmission capacity of 30 Bcm/year (1.06 Tcf/year). CNPC's president Jiang Jiemin said last year that gas for the new system will come from Turkmenistan.</span></b>

"The second phase pipeline project was originally planned to be built from 2010, but now it has been moved forward because China's demand for natural gas has been growing fast," a CNPC official said earlier.

China's demand for natural gas is expected to reach 100 Bcm in 2010, while domestic output was predicted to be around 80 Bcm in the year, Xinhua said.

The existing 4,000 km west-east natural gas pipeline, launched in October 2004, runs eastward from Xinjiang to Shanghai, where it terminates. It consists of a 17 Bcm/year western section and a 12 Bcm/year eastern section. The eastern section is undergoing an expansion program to increase its transmission capacity to 17 Bcm/year by 2010.


Under agreements reached in 2006, Turkmenistan is to deliver 30 Bcm/year (2.9 Bcf/day) of natural gas via a pipeline to China for 30 years. The 7,000 km route will run from gas fields on the right bank of Amu Darya river in the east of the country through Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan to Korgas in China's northwestern frontier Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.

The gas deal signed between Turkmenistan and CNPC in 2006 also provides for Turkmen and Chinese companies to carry out joint exploration and development of deposits and fields on the right bank of Amu Darya under a production sharing agreement.

The 30 Bcm/year of supply which Turkmenistan has committed will be made up of 13 Bcm/year of production from CNPC's PSC area, and another 17 Bcm/year of gas resources that the Turkmen government has promised to develop and deliver to China.

Cheers <!--emo&:beer--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/cheers.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='cheers.gif' /><!--endemo-->
^ Naresh ji could please move your above post to the <b>India - China: Relations And Developments-2</b>.

Let us please keep this thread for India's energy sector only.

Just an request, hope you will oblige.

<!--QuoteBegin-Harshvardan+Feb 11 2008, 03:52 PM-->QUOTE(Harshvardan @ Feb 11 2008, 03:52 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->^ Naresh ji could please move your above post to the <b>India - China: Relations And Developments-2</b>.

Let us please keep this thread for India's energy sector only.

Just an request, hope you will oblige.

<b>Harshvardan :</b>

Many thanks above.

With due respect, I don't feel that this has anything to do with the <b>India - China: Relations And Developments-2</b> Thread-Topic and as such prefer to leave it here as it pertains to the Subject of Energy Transportion and thus is most pertinent to this Thread-Topic.

However, I see no reservation on my part to your copying this Post on to the <b>India - China: Relations And Developments-2</b> Thread-Topic.

Cheers <!--emo&:beer--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/cheers.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='cheers.gif' /><!--endemo-->

[center]<b><span style='font-size:21pt;line-height:100%'>Iran not to wait for India endlessly</span></b>[/center]

NEW DELHI (APP) - Iran has said it could not wait endlessly for India to join Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline project, according to media reports here Tuesday quoting Iranian foreign ministry spokesman.

The reports also quoted the Iranian spokesman Mohammad Ali Hosseini as denying existence of any contract for export of liquefied natural gas to India.

“It (LNG contract) was not agreed. It was not finalised between the two countries in June 2005,” the spokesman said, according to the reports.

A consortium of Indian Oil, GAIL and Bharat Petroleum had signed a Gas Sales and Purchase Agreement (GSPA) for import of five million tons of LNG for 25 years with National Iranian Gas Export Co (NIGEC) on June 13, 2005.

While Tehran has insisted that the contract had to be ratified by the National Iranian Oil Co, the parent firm of NIGEC.

The NIOC has refused to ratify the contract unless the gas price is raised. India has been boycotting trilateral talks on IPI project since July 2007, taking the plea that first it wants to resolve transit fee issue with Islamabad.

Islamabad had invited Indian Petroleum Minister Murli Deora to visit Islamabad on February 7 and 8 but India declined the request saying that talks would be held after elections in Pakistan.

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<b>Jindal Group mulling to launch mega thermal, hydel power projects</b>

Feb 15, 2008

The BC Jindal Group Friday announced its move into the power space with plans of investing over Rs 20,000 crore to produce 5,000 mW power in the next five years.

According to sources in the company, Jindal India Thermal Power plans to carry out its three coal-based power projects for a total of 4,300 mW in Orissa, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh.

The firm also proposes to venture into hydel power production, with plans to establish a 1,000 mW project in North India at a cost of Rs 6,000 crore.

A senior company official said MoUs have been signed with the state governments of Orissa and Chhattisgarh for establishing plants there, while an MoU with the Madhya Pradesh government is scheduled to be signed on Saturday, sources said.
<b>West Bengal to have first grid-connected solar power</b>

Statesman News Service

KOLKATA, Feb. 14: The Centre has finally agreed to give incentive to the state government for setting up the first grid-connected two mega watt solar power station at Dishergarh Power Station complex.

"This is the first plant of this kind to be set up in the country and 8.5 acre land has been earmarked for the project by DPSC at Asansol,'' Mr Mrinal Banerjee, state power minister said.

Power Finance Corporation Ltd (PFC) and West Bengal Green Energy Development Corporation Ltd (WBGEDCL) signed a memorandum of agreement (MoA) today for the purpose.

The cost of the project is estimated to be Rs 41.2 crore excluding the price of the land and PFC has sanctioned a soft loan Rs 30.9 crore for the project. The rest of the money would be shared by WBGEDCL, the minister said.

"The solar power plant will produce 3.5 million units that will be bought by DPSC and WBGEDCL will receive Rs 15 per unit as tariff for selling the green power to DPSC, '' said Mr SP Gon Chowdhury, managing director of WBREDA.

He said: "Since it is the pilot project in the country, we will receive about Rs 10 to Rs 12 per unit as incentive from the Centre and the rest would be paid by DPSC '', Mr Gon Chowdhury said.

The minister said that 12 more proposed solar power projects are in the pipeline and WBGEDCL will set up an energy park at Purulia where private players would set up solar power plants.
<b>BHEL bags Rs 650-cr order to set up power plant in Libya</b>

NEW DELHI: Power equipment maker Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd on Monday said it has secured a Rs 650 crore order for setting up a 300 MW gas turbine-based power plant in Libya.

The order, to be executed on engineering, procurement and construction basis, has been placed by General Electricity Company of Libya for expansion of the 600 MW Western Mountain Power Project, BHEL said in a statement.

BHEL had recently completed execution of the Rs 1,400 crore project, the largest gas turbine-based power project installed by the company so far.

The present contract for extension of Western Mountain Power Project envisages setting up two gas-turbine units of 150 MW each.

The equipment for the 300 MW order would be supplied from BHEL's manufacturing facilities at Haridwar, Bhopal, Jhansi, Bangalore, Chennai and Ranipet, the company said.
Delhi will have surplus power by 2010
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Fri, Mar 21 09:58 AM

'The city will have surplus power supply in two years. The process of capacity building is under way at full throttle,' said R. Narayanaswami, special advisor on the 2010 Commonwealth Games for the Delhi government.

'The expected peak hour demand in the next two years is estimated to be around 5,200 MW against the current estimate of 4,400 MW in summer.' Narayanaswami told IANS in an interview.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Capacity building on the electricity front is a priority concern for the city government. The city government intends to spend over Rs.45 billion on energy during 2007-12, while over Rs.6.15 billion would be spent in the new fiscal.

'In the next couple of years, the city will get power from the Damodar Valley Corp, National Thermal Power Corp, the Dadri power plant, the Jhajhar plant and the Pragati power plant - these total 4,240 MW.'

The government also intends to get 1,800 MW from local sources in addition to the existing installed power generation capacity of 932 MW. The government will also initiate certain corrective measurers to streamline power supply.

'The transmission and distribution loss is being effectively addressed - it was around 49 percent in 2007-08 against the national figure of 30-31 percent. We are serious about making Delhi a power surplus city,' Narayanaswami said.

The government is also looking at a couple of new projects from the centre's capacity addition programme for the 11th Five Year Plan period (2007-12). At the moment, the city stands to get 750 MW from the upcoming power plant at Jhajhar in Haryana.

Officials also point out that while central government had fixed the capacity addition of 78,577 MW for the 11th Plan period, no project had been earmarked for Delhi.

'Efforts are on to get some projects in the city-state territory,' said a senior government official, requesting anonymity.

'Being the national capital, Delhi should get preference so that the basic needs of the people are fulfilled. Electricity is an area where the state government cannot do much if the required support does not come in from other quarters.'<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

[center]<b><span style='font-size:21pt;line-height:100%'>India plans gas pipeline from Oman</span></b>[/center]

<b>NEW DELHI : With two proposed overland transnational pipelines through Pakistan caught in geopolitical knots, fresh efforts have been launched to revive a long-buried plan of establishing an international energy lifeline under Arabian Sea to feed gas to India’s fuel-guzzling economy from West Asia.</b>

The tensions between the United States and Iran and concerns over security situation in Afghanistan have bogged down progress on the pipelines from Iran and Turkmenistan, respectively. With India’s gas demand expected to overshoot 200 million cubic metres a day from 170 at present, an engineering construction conglomerate, which has former petroleum secretary T N R Rao as key member in the project team, has moved in to fill the void, the Times of India reported.

<b>Since December 2007 through February, South Asia Gas Enterprise (SAGE) has given presentations to power, oil ministries, state-owned generation utility National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC), gas utility GAIL, flagship refiner Indian Oil, Tata group, fertilizer companies besides government-run engineering consultancy firm Engineers India Ltd.</b>

SAGE revived the proposal for laying a pipeline under sea between Oman’s Ras al Jifan and coastal Gujarat’s Rapar Gadhwali to ferry about 8 tcf (trillion cubic feet) of gas.

<b>Its presentation said gas could flow as early as 2012 and projected a requirement of $2.1-3.4 billion investment and a (transportation) tariff of around $1.1 to $ 1.8 per mbtu (million British thermal unit).</b>

It skirted issue of identifying specific gas source, saying “over 2,000 tcf reserves are reported to be available in the Middle East”, implying a common carrier nature. Several major gas pipelines around the world run under sea. Even Pakistan has a joint venture with Persian Gulf-South Asia ((P-Gusa) gas company of Qatar for laying a deep sea pipeline linking two countries for bringing gas to Gwadar port and China is planning to tap into it once - if at all - it is built.

Cheers <!--emo&:beer--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/cheers.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='cheers.gif' /><!--endemo-->
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Power from rice husk: A US venture for Bihar villages
Washington, May 14: Two Virginia University students have started a project with an India-based partner to supply electricity to villages in Bihar by burning rice husks, a process that may also help reduce carbon emissions.

So far, two pilot rice husk generators are providing power to about 10,000 rural Indians, which will save 200 tonnes of emissions annually for each village if compared to generation of power from diesel or coal, the university said in a statement here.

The two students are Manoj Sinha and Charles Ransler, from the university's Darden School of Business and their partner is Gyanesh Pandey, an engineer who oversees things on the ground in India.

The project may help turn the huge piles of husks that accumulate in many "rice belt" villages into two valuable products: electricity and ash that can be sold as an ingredient for cement, the institute said.

The business plan of Husk Power Systems calls for a rapid expansion that will put the miniature power plants in hundreds more villages within a few years.

The plan recently received several votes of confidence as college business plan competitions have awarded it almost USD 100,000 in prize money, including USD 50,000 for winning the Social Innovation Competition at the University of Texas on May 2, USD 35,000 for second place at MIT's Ignite Clean Energy competition on May 12 and a USD 10,000 top prize from the University of Virginia on April 7. The idea for the rice husk generators was originally conceived by Sinha, who earned his engineering degree from the University of Massachusetts and holds 10 patents for work done at Intel, and Gyanesh Pandey, who left an engineering career in Los Angeles to return to India.

Sinha and Pandey went to college together in India and both hail from rural areas that struggle with a lack of electricity.

"We grew up in those areas. Our relatives still do not have electricity. We wanted to give back to those areas," Sinha said in the statement.

Originally they envisioned refining the generator concept and raising enough money to donate rice-husk generators for two or three villages near where they grew up, said Sinha.

At Darden, Sinha shared the idea with Ransler, who did a bit of research and soon suggested that the generators could be a financially viable business that could be expanded to hundreds of villages.

There are 480 million Indians with no power and 350 million of them live in villages, concentrated in eastern India's "rice belt," where the villagers are "rice-rich and power-poor," explained Ransler.
Jatropha has a lot of potential in Bharat.


<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Indian State to Plant 160 Million Jatropha Plants in Quest for Biofuel Self-Sufficiency
4 April 2006

The Indian state of Chhattisgarh will plant 160 million jatropha saplings in all its 16 districts this year with the aim of becoming a biofuel self-reliant state by 2015. (Earlier post.)

Some 80 million of the jatropha plants are to be planted by the forest department in wasteland areas, according to the report by the Indo-Asian News Service. Jatropha can thrive under a variety of geo-climatic conditions, has a low gestation period and a high seed-yield.

    “In a bid to inspire small farmers for mass cultivation of jatropha, the government has decided to provide 500 jatropha saplings free of cost to farmers interested to cultivate it and 50 paise per sapling will be charged for above 500 saplings,” the [unnamed] official said.

The state of Chhattisgarh plans to earn Rs.40 billion (US$895 million) annually by selling seeds after 2010. It has advised the central government to introduce a national biofuel policy and provide a massive grant to states working on a long-term policy to emerge as biofuel self-reliant.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Great resource that can solve problems of deforestation, desertification, and fuel crisis combined with other renewable resources. It's especially good since its not a grain and needs only wasteland to grow.
<b>Crude oil prices soar, BPCL starts fuel rationing</b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Though the poll-bound Government refuses to hike prices, oil companies are curbing supplies to cut losses.

Petroleum companies have informed the ministry that supply will have to be curtailed to curb the rising demand.

This would mean that every dealer would receive only a limited quota of fuel every month proportionate to sales.

They should increase price. Today Indian Re is 42.960. If they increase price, consumption of oil will drop but inflation will increase.
I hope US is working on oil supply from Iraq, it is not even 50% of Saddam's time.
<b>Oil in Beverly Hills `Humming' Where Britney Spears Is Shopping </b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->``In the Middle East you might have 300 barrels of oil per cubic acre, but in the Los Angeles Basin you might have 4,000 barrels per cubic acre,'' says Mike Edwards, vice president of Denver-based Venoco Inc., which has 24 active wells in the Beverly Hills area, including one alongside Beverly Hills High School. ``In terms of the land that produces oil, the basin is very rich.''

Beverly Center's kidney-bean shape was designed to accommodate drilling. It's one of two sites within blocks of Beverly Hills, a city of about 35,000 where Houston-based Plains, the fourth-biggest producer in California, is expanding. The 26-year-old mall houses 160 retailers, including Gucci, Louis Vuitton and Burberry. Pumping operations are hidden behind a wall between Macy's and Bloomingdale's.

`Weird Things'

``This is one of those weird things about Los Angeles,'' says Jeff Brown, the mall's general manager. ``There are oil wells all over the place. Drive down the street, you see hotel, beautiful house, oil well. Here, I don't know if shoppers know there's one or not. They probably don't.''

This year all well on I-5, I-40 , I-10 are very active, never seen before. All over new collection centers are poping up.
No relief as OPEC tips $US170 oil

* June 29, 2008
* Page 1 of 2 | Single Page View

THE president of OPEC, Chakib Khelil, has predicted that the price of oil will climb to $US170 a barrel before the end of the year on a fall in the value of the US dollar and political conflicts.

Political pressure on Iran and the depreciation of the US dollar had caused a surge in oil prices, said Mr Khelil, who also serves as Algeria's oil minister.

New York-traded crude has more than doubled in a year and touched a record $US142.99 a barrel at the close of trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange on Friday. This has pushed prices at the pump in Australia to more than $1.70 a litre for premium unleaded petrol.

An oil price of $US170 a barrel would push the price of petrol to just under $2 a litre.

Mr Khelil's comments come as the world's biggest crude producers and consumers gather in Madrid today to discuss the crisis over rising fuel prices.

More than 3000 delegates, including leading corporate and political figures, will meet at the 19th World Petroleum Congress after last week's attempt by Saudi Arabia to reduce the cost of oil by boosting output among producer nations failed to agree on concerted action.

The president of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries is expected to be joined in Madrid by the head of the International Energy Agency and ministers from Nigeria, Russia, Venezuela, India, France and the Netherlands. The bosses of oil giants ExxonMobil of the US, CNOOC of China, Britain's BP and Shell, Rosneft of Russia and Total of France are also expected to attend.

OPEC ministers say that oil output is sufficient, even as Saudi Arabia, the biggest producer, pledged to pump an extra 200,000 barrels a day next month to calm the market.

Most experts agreed after last week's meeting that the only concrete result was Saudi Arabia's announcement of extra production which it could significantly step up if necessary.

Most OPEC members remain firmly against any increase in their outputs and blame speculators and the US dollar's fall for the price increases. Continued...


"The market is completely supplied," the Venezuelan Oil Minister, Rafael Ramirez, said yesterday. Libya announced possible production cuts, calling the market oversupplied.

The rising cost of crude was not linked to supply, Mr Khelil said. "There is more than enough oil in the market to meet the international demand."

Prices, which are up 38 per cent this quarter, are heading for the biggest quarterly gain since the first three months of 1999, when oil traded between $US11 and $US17 a barrel.

As yet, there appears no sign of the price pressure easing with the investment guru Jim Rogers the latest to predict that the only direction is upward.

Mr Rogers, who two years ago correctly predicted oil would reach $US100 a barrel, told investors at a conference in China over the weekend that he expected prices to go even higher than their present level. They will keep rising, "unless someone finds a major oilfield very quickly, in accessible areas", he said.

However, the chief executive of BG group, the British energy giant which last week lobbed a $US13.8 billion ($14.4 billion) hostile bid at Australian power generator and retailer Origin Energy, said yesterday he did not believe the oil price rises would last.

"The current prices, if you look at the underlying long-run marginal cost of oil production, are too high to be sustained," Frank Chapman told ABC1 yesterday. "There is a good deal of speculative anxiety because of geopolitical effects, holding the price up."

Many analysts think oil prices will hit at least $US150 a barrel before they come down sharply.

"At that point, we will start to see more signs of demand destruction and an eventual tipping point in oil markets," said Deutsche Bank in a research note.

Bloomberg and AFP


Uh! Ooh!! Here goes Mani Shankar Aiyer’s “Iranian” LNG down the drain!!!

[center]<b><span style='font-size:21pt;line-height:100%'>Total chief says too risky to invest in Iran</span></b>[/center]

LONDON (AFP) - The head of French energy giant Total said in an interview published Thursday that it is too politically risky to invest in Iran, dealing a serious blow to the Islamic republic's key energy sector.

Chief executive Christophe de Margerie's comments virtually cripple Tehran's hopes of boosting its gas exports because Total is the last major western energy group considering a big investment.

"Today we would be taking too much political risk to invest in Iran because people will say : 'Total will do anything for money,'" de Margerie told the Financial Times newspaper.

<b>Total was to develop phase 11 of Iran's giant South Pars gas field <span style='font-size:14pt;line-height:100%'>to produce liquefied natural gas (LNG) alongside Malaysia's Petronas. Iran has vast untapped gas reserves and wants to develop the sector for export.</span></b>

The news came amid escalating tensions between world powers, led by the United States, and Tehran.

On Wednesday, Iran test-fired a Shahab-3 missile which it said is capable of reaching Israel and continued missile tests Thursday, fuelling fears of a conflict over its disputed nuclear programme and triggering a rise in oil prices.

Total is one of the few companies in the world thought to have the technology to exploit Iran's gas reserves -- the biggest in the world after Russia's -- and the news is likely to come as a serious blow to Tehran.

It is now unlikely to be able to boost its gas exports significantly until late next decade at the earliest, the Financial Times said.

Samuel Ciszuk, a Middle East energy analyst at economic analysts Global Insight, told the paper the news was "a death blow" for Iran's ambitions over liquefied natural gas.

The Financial Times described the news as a "victory for US efforts to isolate Tehran" and said Total had been left exposed by Royal Dutch Shell and Repsol YPF's announcement in May that they would pull out of phase 13 of work in the field, the biggest in the world.

South Pars is shared between Iran and Qatar but exploitation on the Iranian side has been slow by comparison with the work done by Qatar.

De Margerie also reportedly voiced frustration over tight scrutiny of investments in the Iranian energy sector, saying: "You take the two major countries (Iran and Iraq) out of the system and then you say: 'There is not enough oil and gas.' Oh no, surprise, surprise."

Washington had reportedly been particularly worried about the possible impact of a major Total investment in Iran.

<b>Iran warned in September it was prepared to go ahead with a major gas project using Iranian firms alone if Total did not swiftly implement the deal.</b>

Wednesday's missile test was condemned by the US, although US Defence Secretary Robert Gates played down the risks of a conflict between his country and Iran.

The UN Security Council has imposed several rounds of sanctions on Iran for not suspending its uranium enrichment activities, which world powers fear could be used to make a nuclear weapon.

Tehran insists the programme is for civilian energy purposes.

Cheers <!--emo&:beer--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/cheers.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='cheers.gif' /><!--endemo-->
Before election Congress will try to sign as many as possible contracts before election, they need huge amount of bribes before election, so now onward watch out for defence and energy contracts because they come with big cut for Congress party. These low life even able to make deal with Saddam when they were out of power, now they are in power, its like pouring for them.

<b>Mudy Ji :</b>

1. As I see it the Iranians are to supply India with Five Million Tonnes of LNG - by Ship - and Two to Three Billion Cubic of Natural Gas via a Pipe Line through Pakistan.

1. LNG is out.

2. Natural Gas by Pipe Line : Now that Yem Yes has decided to go for the Nuclear Deal I think he will have to have a “Re-think” in respect of this PIPE Line via Pakistan.

One can but wait and watch.

Cheers <!--emo&:beer--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/cheers.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='cheers.gif' /><!--endemo-->

<b>Mudy Ji :</b>

The Kriminal Kaangress Kaamunist Klan may sign a number of "Contracts" but I doubt the Iran Gas will be one of them. Here's the latest :

<b>Iran’s gas export prospects sink as tensions rise</b>

<i>* Iran has not yet exported any LNG but says it will be able to produce 77 million tonnes a year by 2014</i>

LONDON : Iran’s vast gas reserves will remain largely untapped so long as Western companies are scared off by political tensions and US sanctions stop Tehran from getting the technology it needs to develop them alone.

European and Asian energy companies had been lining up to invest in Iran’s gas industry, with the lure of the world’s second-largest reserves countering pressure from the United States to stay away. But European companies, deterred by heightened tension over Iran’s nuclear programme, have now shelved immediate plans for multi-billion-dollar liquefied natural gas (LNG) export projects, although they still yearn for Iran’s gas riches.

“Iran now has no access to foreign majors’ technology for any of its LNG projects, and will find it impossible to import equipment and develop expertise on its own under the current sanctions,” Samuel Ciszuk, Middle East energy analyst at Global Insight, said.

“The narrow group of international companies that have experience of managing the construction of a liquefaction plant makes it close to impossible for Iran to proceed on its own,” Ciszuk said after France’s Total reiterated last week it would not spend any more on Iranian gas projects for now.

Iran has not yet exported any LNG but says it will be able to produce 77 million tonnes a year by 2014, more than double the amount the world’s leading exporter, Qatar, is producing after nearly two decades of steady investment.

Companies including Total, Royal Dutch Shell, Spain’s Repsol, and Norway’s Statoil, have invested billions in Iran’s oil and gas sector, defying the threat of sanctions from the United States. But, as Iran tested long-range missiles last week, Total became the last European major to delay plans. Growing confrontation over Iran’s nuclear programme, which Tehran insists is for energy but which Western governments say is for weapons, is increasing the risk of investment.

The delays to investments in Iran mean it will do well to export any LNG within seven years, analysts say, with or without foreign help. Without LNG plants to export gas by tanker to the highest bidder, Iran could pump some gas by pipeline to neighbours. But they are small markets compared with the global hunger for LNG.

<b>Analysts say the only large-scale pipeline project, which would pump gas across Pakistan to India, is fraught with security concerns and pricing disputes. It is doubtful the European Union would support Tehran’s suggestion it could hook up to the proposed Nabucco pipeline to bring gas from Central Asia to Europe.</b>

That leaves LNG as Iran’s only big export route, but it is unlikely to get obtain the predominantly US technology it needs to cool gas into liquid until Washington lifts its ban on US companies doing business with the Islamic Republic.

Iranian Oil Minister Gholamhossein Nozari said last week the country was prepared to develop its giant South Pars gas field without Total but analysts doubt it can do anything while U.S. sanctions remain in place.

“That would be tough to do, not least because most of the technology is American and also subject to the boycott,” Niall Trimble, a gas specialist at the Energy Contract Company in London, said.

“It depends largely on the US boycott. If the Iranians decide to be more conciliatory towards the United States and the United States decides to lift the boycott, then it’s game on.”

They will be back : European energy giants will be back with new projects when the tension dies down. “It’s a temporary setback. They would definitely come back if things changed in a year or two’s time. You don’t ignore reserves of that scale,” Trimble said. “They are buying themselves some time by switching to another project,” Ross Millan, a Middle East and Africa Energy analyst at Wood Mackenzie, said.

“They still want to be there for the long haul.” In the meantime other energy-hungry companies could try to step in, but doubts remain over their ability to do the job and

they would face problems in getting the necessary equipment, most of which is made in the United States or Europe.

<b>China National Offshore Oil Corp (CNOOC), driving China’s own nascent LNG industry, is interested in developing the North Pars LNG projects but also seems unwilling or unable to do it without a Western partner, Ciszuk said. Total’s Malaysian partner Petronas has repeatedly delayed its final decision on investing in the Pars LNG project. Its chief executive said last month the scheme was no longer viable, blaming spiralling costs.</b>

Suspicions Russian gas export monopoly Gazprom might corner the Iranian gas export market, while Europeans needing alternatives to Russian gas look on, will have been reawakened by Chief Executive Alexei Miller’s talks with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad about business opportunities.

<b>But analysts say Gazprom, the world’s largest gas producer, lacks the ability to build the LNG facilities Iran wants without international oil company (IOC) involvement. “Gazprom does not have the know-how to develop LNG export projects without IOC help,” said Jonathan Stern, director of gas research and Gazprom specialist at the Oxford Institute of Energy Studies.</b>

“The extent to which such projects could be developed without U.S. equipment — which is sanctioned — is also not clear.” reuters

Cheers <!--emo&:flush--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/Flush.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='Flush.gif' /><!--endemo-->
<!--emo&:ind--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/india.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='india.gif' /><!--endemo--> The car has an energy generator that extracts hydrogen from water that is poured into the car's tank. The generator then releases electrons that produce electric power to run the car. Genepax, the company that invented the technology, aims to collaborate with Japanese manufacturers to mass produce it.

<img src='http://i79.photobucket.com/albums/j132/abx2006/wtr.jpg' border='0' alt='user posted image' />

<!--emo&:cool--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/specool.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='specool.gif' /><!--endemo--> $21.5 million or Rs 100 crore is the fruit of a sweet legal victory which Oil and Natural Gas Corporation earned in the Federal Court of Australia against Perth-based Clough Engineering this week.

This ruling legally arms ONGC, which had accused Clough of non-performance in the development of deep sea blocks in the Krishna-Godavari basin off the Andhra Pradesh coast, to encash the performance guarantee given by the Australian firm.


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