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India looks to import more LNG from Russia’s resource-rich Arctic region

India looks to import more LNG from Russia’s resource-rich Arctic region
Indian companies are going to purchase more Russian liquefied natural gas (LNG), including from new projects in the Arctic region, according to Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak.

“The LNG market will expand and our Indian partners are interested in increasing LNG supplies in the future, including from the new Arctic LNG 2 project and future project, Arctic LNG 3,” Novak said, commenting on the results of his talks with Indian Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas and Steel Dharmendra Pradhan. The Russian minister added that the two sides are eyeing other joint projects and will continue cooperating on the matter.

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Since last year, Russia has been successfully shipping LNG to India as part of mounting exports of energy resources to the country. In the first half of 2019, exports of oil products jumped more than 17 percent to 1.3 million tons, while coal supplies rose 25 percent, exceeding 3 million tons, Novak said after the senior Russian and Indian energy officials met on Friday. 

Russia and India have long mulled joint development of the resource-rich Arctic region. On Friday, Russian presidential aide Yuri Ushakov said Moscow and New Delhi are looking at opportunities for joint oil and gas exploration in the Arctic shelf and in Russia’s Far East. 

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The Arctic LNG 2 project of major Russian gas producer Novatek is set to become operational in 2022-23, and will be able to produce 19.8 million tons of LNG per year. It is Novatek’s second plant for liquefying gas in the Arctic. The project has already drawn interest from foreign investors, including China, Japan, France, and Saudi Arabia.

Last year, the gas producer started drilling gas well in the North-Obskiy license area for its third facility in the Arctic, as the company plans to further boost LNG production in the region.

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