State-controlled GAIL (India) Ltd and EDF Trading have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to jointly acquire and develop upstream oil and gas assets in North America and to partner in the trading of US gas and LNG.

“The advent of shale gas in the US bodes very well for the global hydrocarbon landscape and this partnership is expected to look for business opportunities in this exciting space in order to enhance the oil and gas sourcing prospects for India,” said M Veerappa Moily, union minister of petroleum and natural gas.

GAIL provides liquefied petroleum gas, liquid hydrocarbons and petrochemicals, and has extensive infrastructure in the mid-stream and downstream gas value chain in India. The expansion will, however, pitch it against another state-controlled energy firm ONGC, which is into exploration and development of such assets.

“There are significant opportunities in the North American gas markets and we are pleased to be partnering with GAIL, one of the world’s leading gas companies, in jointly developing this business,” said John Rittenhouse, chief executive of EDF Trading.

EDF Trading offers various services including supply and delivery, terminal operations, re-gasification and nominations into networks. It is part of the French energy giant EDF.

(Edited by Sanghamitra Mandal)

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