OVL Expresses Interest for Bidding in Tanzanian Oil Blocks
INVC, Delhi, ONGC Videsh Limited has expressed interest for bidding in the 4th Licensing round for seven offshore and one onshore oil/gas blocks in Tanzania, keeping in mind the measures to be taken to strengthen cooperation in the field of Oil and Gas. Tanzania has appreciated the various initiatives taken by India for setting up infrastructure projects in Tanzania, namely 200 MW gas-based Combined Cycle Power Project, Wind Power Project and the Dry Port Project. India, on the other hand, has agreed to cooperate with Tanzania for rehabilitation and modernization of the Tanzania Railway system. The matter came up for discussion between Dr. D Purandeswari, Minister of State for Commerce and Industry and Dr. Abdallah O Kigoda, Minister of Industry and Trade, Tanzania, during the 3rd meeting of the Tanzania-India Joint Trade Committee (JTC) held at Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania yesterday. The matter relating to the ban on export of rough Tanzanite imposed by Tanzania also came up for discussion between the two Ministers. In response to the Indian request for revoking the ban, the Tanzanian side assured that the matter will be considered. The Indian delegation also agreed to consider the Tanzanian request to establish a Gemology Institute in Tanzania and offered help in capacity building by training master craftsmen of Tanzania. Both the sides further agreed to double the volume of bilateral trade in the next two years and to reduce the trade imbalance, which is currently in favour of India. The volume of bilateral trade in 2012 was USD 2.12 billion. During the JTC meeting, the Tanzanian side appreciated the facility extended by India to Least Developed Countries (LDCs) through the Duty Free Tariff Preference (DFTP) Scheme for LDCs, which came into effect in August, 2008 with Tariff reduction spread over five years. The scheme has helped the Tanzanian exporters towards enhanced market access in the Indian market. In that respect, the exports to India have grown from USD 196 million in 2008 to USD 526 million in 2012. Dr. Purandeswari in a bilateral meeting with Dr. Kigoda noted with satisfaction that the Indian investments in Tanzania are steadily rising in diversified sectors such as agriculture and agro-processing, construction, financial services, manufacturing, mining, tourism, telecommunication and transport. From 1990 to June, 2013, investment by Indian companies in Tanzania is estimated to be USD 1.91 billion. Both the Ministers felt that there is a huge untapped potential for increasing Indian investment in Tanzania. The Indian Minister raised the issue regarding high cost of resident/work permit by Tanzanian authorities. A mega event namely “India Show” being organized by Confederation of Indian Industry in collaboration with Ministry of Commerce and Industry, in Dar-es-Salaam from 25th to 27th September, 2013, with the theme as ‘Nurturing Growth, Enhancing Partnerships’, was inaugurated by Dr. Purandeswari, Mr. Seif Sharif Hamad, the Fist Vice President of Zanzibar and Dr. Kigoda. During the inaugural address at the India Show, Dr. Purandeswari acknowledged the fact the East African region was the largest export destination for Indian exports among all the regions in Africa and stressed on the importance of people-to-people contacts for enhancing the trade and investment relations.