India is ready to spend up to $25 billion on overseas oil and gas ventures to meet spiraling demand, Oil Minister Mani Shankar Aiyar said March 23.
India's state-owned oil firms already have stakes in oil and gas fields in Russia, Sudan, Iraq, Libya, Egypt, Qatar, Ivory Coast, Australia, Vietnam and Myanmar, but lag far behind Chinese companies. Aiyar said India, Asia's fourth largest economy, and China would continue to be dictated to by market forces and compete in some areas but there were also possibilities for working together.
India buys nearly 70% of its annual requirement from the global market. With its economy growing at around 7%, its reliance on imported crude is expected to grow to around 85% in the next 20 years.
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2005