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Canadian company keen to explore shale gas in Assam

BS Reporter/Kolkata/ Guwahati 21 Nov 12 | 12:22 AM

Canadian company East-West Petroleum Corporation has expressed its keenness in exploring shale oil and shale gas in Assam.

Herb Dhaliwal, a former Canadian Minister, who is the promoter of East-West Petroleum Corporation, met Assam chief minister Tarun Gogoi on Monday and discussed investment potential in Assam’s oil sector.

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Fifty-nine-year-old Dhaliwal said his company is “keen enough" to explore investment opportunities in Assam.

“Assam has huge reserves of shale oil and gas. We have come here to explore and invest. We want to be partners in progress with Government of Assam. We want the support and cooperation of your Government towards this end," said Dhaliwal, who was the first Indian-Canadian to become cabinet minister in Canada.

Dhaliwal pointed out that North America had produced 20 per cent of oil and gas from shale by adopting latest technology. “As Assam possesses huge potential we can rope in new technology to extract oil and gas from shale. This will open up the floodgates of investments and employment avenues in Assam," he said.

Dhaliwal said he had been in talks with Oil India Ltd (OIL), Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Ltd (ONGC) and GAIL India Ltd (GAIL) “to adopt state-of-the-art technology for exploration of oil and gas".

Dhaliwal urged the Gogoi to take up with the Union ministry of petroleum and the prime minister to frame a policy for shale oil and shale gas.

Shale gas is the natural gas contained in absorbed form in sedimentary rocks lying beneath the earth surface.

Of late, surveys and mappings have proved substantial shale gas reserves in Assam-Arakan basin.

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