MOSCOW: India’s minister of oil and natural gas Hardeep Singh Puri discussed the possibility of LNG purchases from Russia along with acquisition of a stake in Novatek’s Arctic LNG 2 project during his visit to Vladivostok last week.
“Everything (all options) is on the table,” Puri said in response to a question on whether the purchase of gas or also the entry into the share capital of Arctic LNG 2 is being discussed. Puri told reporters Indian companies held talks with Novatek, and the offer to purchase the shares was received “recently,” the Indian minister said, according to Interfax.
The Indian companies are probably the consortium of ONGC and Petronet LNG, according to media reports.
A representative of the Indian delegation, involved in the negotiations, who wished to remain anonymous, confirmed to reporters that they were discussing the purchase of a 9.9 percent stake in Arctic LNG 2 from Novatek, but a decision has not yet been made, according to Interfax.
“The sale of a 9.9 percent interest at a decent price would be positive news for Novatek in terms of developing long-term cooperation with Indian buyers,” analysts at Moscow-based Sinara Financial Group said in a Sept. 7 note.
In March 2019, Total Group acquired a 10 percent interest in Arctic LNG 2 and joint control over the entity upon closing the transaction for a total consideration of RUB 161.8 billion ($2.5 billion).
“In the event of a deal, Novatek will retain its 50.1 percent stake in Arctic LNG 2, as it now has in Yamal LNG, and should get a high price, given very solid current gas quotes on international markets and the fact that the Arctic LNG 2 consortium was formed back in the first half of 2019, prior to the final investment decision on the project,” the Sinara analysts said.