Iran: New LNG Terminal India Keen on Setting up LNG Terminal and Petrochemical Plants at Iranian Port
A piece of the Iranian market: India has expressed interest in setting up an LNG terminal at Chahabar port in Iran to ship back home natural gas from the Persian Gulf nation, stated the Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan.
New Delhi/India – India is keen to set up its engagement with hydrocarbon- rich Iran, which has recently come out of western sanctions, and is lining up $20 billion of investment in the oil and gas as well as petrochemical and fertilizer projects. Pradhan said he had during his visit to Tehran on April 9 conveyed interest of Indian companies in setting up fertilizer and petrochemical plants, including the Chahabar SEZ.
The projects can be ‘either in joint venture between Indian and Iranian public sector companies or with private sector partners,’ he said in a written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha. He said he asked Iran to allocate land in the SEZ for the project but no MoU has so far been sized on this. Also, he expressed India’s interest in importing LPG from Iran and proposed to set up an extraction plant in Chahabar. India is also keen on importing natural gas from Iran either in ships (LNG) or through the proposed Iran-Pakistan-India pipeline, he said.
New Cracker Plant in Chahabar in the Pipeline
During his visit, he also ‘expressed India’s interest in setting up an LNG plant and gas cracker in Chahabar port,’ the reply said. Pradhan asked Iran for “favorable treatment in the pricing of gas for India and also supply of rich gas at a competitive price and on long term basis.” “Competitive gas pricing was crucial in making the projects attractive for the prospective investors,” he said.
The Minister also discussed with his Iranian counterpart the repayment of nearly $6.5 billion that Indian refiners owe to Iran as also rights to develop the Farzad-B gas field in the Persian Gulf discovered by OVL. “After lifting of sanctions by the international community following the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) agreement between P5+1 (China, France, Germany, Russia, UK and the US), the European Union, and Iran, the Central Bank of Iran has requested RBI for bringing the country under ACU mechanism,” he said.
ACU Sets the PAce for Iranian-Indian Partnership
After this system is established, all future trade transactions with Iran would be settled through the Asian Clearing Union (ACU), he said. “RBI in turn has sought concurrence from the Department of Economic Affairs for brining Iran under the ACU mechanism. Actual settlement through ACU mechanism hinges on availability of international euro channels for making the payment,” he added.