NEW DELHI: An Indian delegation will visit Iran this week to scout for investment opportunities ahead of an anticipated nuclear deal between the Opec-member and world powers that would soften sanctions against the country, sources privy to the plan said.
Officials from India’s finance and oil ministries and executives from ONGC Videsh and Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd are part of the delegation that will hold meeting with their Iranian counterparts on Saturday, the sources said.
India is Iran’s biggest oil client after China although its imports from Tehran have declined under pressure from western sanctions.
New Delhi’s oil imports from Tehran have eased from 370,000 bpd in 2010-11 to about 220,000 million tonnes in 2014-15 under pressure from international sanctions.
Iran and six world powers reached a framework nuclear agreement on April 2, spurring hopes for a final deal by end-June that would lift economic sanctions imposed by the West against Tehran’s disputed nuclear programme.
Apart from seeking more oil at better terms and other investment opportunities in the energy sector, India will push for development rights at the Farzad-B gas field in Farsi block, the sources said.
Published in Dawn, April 17th, 2015