BP plc, Europe's second-biggest oil firm, today said it its board met for the first time in India this week to gain an understanding of opportunities in the world's third largest energy consuming nation.
Members of BP board including Chairman Carl-Henric Svanberg and CEO Bob Dudley arrived on May 14 and during the four day visit dined with Oil Minister M Veerappa Moily and partner Reliance Industries officials including Chairman Mukesh Ambani, visited their flagship KG-D6 fields in Bay of Bengal and called on President Pranab Mukherjee.
"The Board also met with Government dignitaries and business partners," BP said in a statement here.
In an interaction with Mukherjee today, BP Chairman Carl-Henric Svanberg affirmed, "We are working closely with the Government of India in its quest for energy security. I am confident that, working together with our partners Reliance Industries, our combined capabilities, experience and expertise in deep water will support the efficient and cost-effective development of India's energy resources."
BP occasionally holds a Board meeting in a significant market for the company, and this year a decision was taken to hold one in India. "This is a clear indicator of the company's strong commitment to the Indian energy sector," it said.
MNCs bringing their boards to hold meetings here is symbolic of their ambitions linked to the country. PepsiCo, Goldman Sachs, Lenovo and Unilever are among those who have previously held board meeting in India.
Commenting on the visit, BP CEO Bob Dudley said: "I am very pleased to see our teams working closely with the Government of India and our partners, securing alignment on all our key priorities."
"We had an important visit to the Kakinada onshore terminal today, a truly world class facility. Together with Reliance we are focused on finding more hydrocarbons and addressing the complexities of the geology off the east coast of India," he added.
In Feb 2013, BP and RIL had announced a KG-D6 block enhancement plan targeting 4 Trillion cubic feet resources.
"BP believes India has the potential to find significantly more oil and gas, which requires policy and regulatory support to attract the investment, right technology and capability to find and develop the resources," the statement said.
While Dudley met Moily on May 14 evening, the board had dinner with him the next day at British High Commission.
The board meeting happened yesterday and today the BP team few to Kakinada and then to offshore facilities in KG-D6 fields, which were at the centre of the company's decision to invest USD 7.2 billion in acquiring 30 per cent stake in 21 oil and gas blocks of RIL.