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India eyes Sakhalin-III role

India plans to pitch for projects in the Russian Far East during a visit by Indian Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Murli Deora, news reports said.

The Web site of state-run broadcaster Doordarshan reported Monday that Deora, during a visit to Moscow later this month, will make a pitch for Indian firms' participation in future Sakhalin oil and gas projects.

The report quoted official sources as saying Deora will use the Oct. 23 visit to push for ONGC Videsh Ltd., the overseas arm of state-run Oil and Natural Gas. Corp., to have a role in Sakhalin-III.

OVL has a 20 percent stake in Sakhalin-I, which is operated by ExxonMobil.

The report said India wants OVL and Russia's Rosneft to jointly bid for the Sakhalin-III project.

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