Reliance Industries and its partner BP plc today announced investment of USD 6 billion in developing new gas fields in the KG-D6 block after an eight- year hiatus. RIL chairman Mukesh Ambani said two firms have also agreed on a strategic cooperation on new opportunities for conventional and unconventional fuel trading and marketing including jointly setting up petrol pumps. "Changed policies have allowed us to develop new resources," BP CEO Bob Dudley said. He said BP-RIL has agreed to progress on R-Series gas field development in the KG-D6 block and will invest USD 6 billion. The gas project will reduce India's import dependence by 10 per cent. Addressing a joint press conference, Ambani said RIL-BP after many years will invest Rs 40,000 crore to bring 30-35 mmscmd of gas. This "new and historic cooperation" will also explore trading of fuel and carbon emission trading, he said. With regard to pending arbitration, Ambani said RIL will follow legal course for bringing them to conclusion. "We don't see pending arbitration hampering our new investments," he added RIL is locked in four arbitration cases with the government.
It is in arbitration against the government disallowing recovery of certain KG-D6 gas field costs as a punishment for gas output lagging targets. Another arbitration is over deferring of a natural gas price hike due to the company from April 1, 2014. The latest arbitration is against government demanding USD 1.55 billion compensation from RIL and its partners for "unfairly" producing ONGC's gas.
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