NEW DELHI Oct 15 Indian state-run exploration
company Oil and Natural Gas Corp plans to approach
Marathon Oil about buying half of its 20 percent stake
in the Athabasca Oil Sands Project in Canada, two sources with
knowledge of the matter said on Monday.
ONGC Videsh Ltd, the overseas investment arm of ONGC, tried
last year to acquire a stake in the Shell-operated
255,000 barrel-a-day mining and synthetic crude processing
operation, but the deal did not materialise, the sources said.
ONGC will again discuss the issue with Marathon Oil Chairman
Clarence P Cazlot, who is scheduled to attend the Petrotech
energy conference in Delhi on Monday and Tuesday, said the
sources, who were not authorised to speak to media.
The New Delhi government has told state firms to secure
energy assets overseas as the world's No 4 oil importer looks
for supplies to power its $2 trillion economy.
ONGC Videsh Managing Director D. K. Sarraf declined to
Shell owns 60 percent of the Athabasca project, which
includes the Muskeg River and Jackpine mines, according to Shell
Canada's website. Marathon and Chevron each own 20
The Muskeg River mine's current production capacity is
155,000 barrels per day (bpd), while the Jackpine mine has a
capacity of 100,000 barrels per day, it said.
Last month, sources said a trio of state-run Indian oil
companies, including ONGC, bid $5 billion for stakes in Canadian
oil sands holdings owned by ConocoPhillips.