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India: Oil reserves will last only till 2016, says Govt

New Delhi: India has oil reserves to last only till 2016, if no new discovery is made, the Petroleum Minister, Mr Mani Shankar Aiyar, said today.

As per the Ninth Five Year Plan document, presuming no further discoveries are made, the hydrocarbon reserves of the country are unlikely to last beyond 2016 at the production levels of 2001-02, he said in written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha here.

As on April 1, 2004, balance recoverable oil plus oil equivalent of gas (O+OEG) is of the order of 1658 million tonnes, he said.

Mr Aiyar said new areas are being opened up for exploration and national oil companies are implementing enhanced exploration programmes to discover more oil and gas in the country.

Ninty exploration blocks have been awarded under the New Exploration Licensing Policy. Exploration work in NELP blocks has already led to 19 oil and gas discoveries so far.

BPCL: To another question, Mr Aiyar said Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd will invest Rs 807.46 crore in extending the Mumbai-Manglia (Indore) petroleum product pipeline to Piyala (Haryana) along with a feeder pipeline to Bijwasan (Delhi). The project is scheduled to be mechanically completed by September 2006.

Cairn: Mr Aiyar said Cairn Energy of UK has paid Rajasthan government Rs 2.70 crore as 20 per cent royalty out of the Rs 13.5 crore it earned by selling 1,11,400 barrels of oil extracted from Saraswati, Ragheshwari and Mangla oil fields in Barmer district to private refineries. - PTI

Editorial Notes: First published 2 Dec 2004. -AF

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