India's ONGC to Form Unit for Gas Biz
Indian state-run oil and gas explorer ONGC will form a subsidiary to focus on gas and LNG business, it said in a February 13 statement.
“Board has approved the creation of a new wholly-owned subsidiary company for focusing on gas and LNG business value chain subject to necessary approvals,” it said. "The company is being formed with the objective of sourcing, marketing and trading of natural gas, LNG business, hydrogen-enriched CNG (HCNG), gas to power business, bioenergy/bio-gas/bio methane/other bio fuels business, etc.”
ONGC has also decided to buy a 5% stake in Indian Gas Exchange (IEX), which was launched last year. "As an important stakeholder in the gas sector, it would be critical for ONGC to participate at the gas exchange for development of the gas sector. ONGC's interests towards realising maximum value from its gas marketing efforts may be substantiated through this first gas trading platform in the country," it said.
Launched on June 15 last year, IGX became the first gas exchange to receive authorisation from Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board under recently notified Gas Exchange Regulations 2020. The exchange now has 15 members and more than 500 registered clients. It operates from three physical hubs –Hazira and Dahej in Gujarat and KG basin in Andhra Pradesh.
Other major players in the Indian gas space Gail, Adani Gas and Torrent Gas have also invested in the exchange. India is looking to expand the use of gas in the economy and plans to increase its share in the energy mix to 15% by 2030.
Meanwhile, ONGC reported a standalone net profit in the three months ending December 31 of rupees 13.78bn ($190mn), down 67.4% year/year.