GAIL India still in talks with Ophir Energy over Tanzania gas assets

By VCPOST Staff Reporter

Dec 03, 2013 05:15 AM EST

State-owned natural gas company GAIL India on Tuesday said that it is still in talks with Ophir Energy PLC for a stake in its offshore gas assets in Tanzania. Wall Street Journal (WSJ) in a report said that the negotiations won't be affected by Ophir's share sale deal with Singapore state-owned firm Pavilion Energy last month. 

GAIL marketing director Prabhat Singh told WSJ that there are still options available with Ophir in Tanzania. Ophir sold its 20% stake, but still has another 20% holding in three blocks. According to the report, Ophir sold a share of a giant natural gas discovery off the coast of Tanzania to Pavilion Energy for USD1.3 billion. The deal marked the first major transaction in Tanzania's natural gas sector.

The deal was initially seen as a setback for GAIL's ambitions in Tanzania, WSJ said.

After the deal with Pavilion Energy, Ophir holds a 20% stake in blocks 1, 3 and 4. Meanwhile, it has an 80% operating interest in block 7 and 70% operating interest in East Pande, the report said. 

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