‘Howdy Modi’ Sponsor Signs Import Deal With Indian Govt’s Petronet

Tellurian signed an MoU with govt-owned Petronet, in what is touted as one of the biggest LNG deals in US history.

Updated
Politics
2 min read
The deal between Petronet and Tellurian was signed in PM Narendra Modi’s presence in Houston.
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The Government of India’s Petronet LNG Limited has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with US natural gas company Tellurian Inc, in what is being projected as one of the biggest LNG deals in US history.

Under the deal, Petronet and its affiliates can import up to five million tonnes per annum (MTPA) of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the US. The two companies announced this deal on Saturday, 21 September, during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the United States.

A statement from Tellurian said that the Memorandum of Understanding was signed in PM Modi’s presence.

“It is an honour to sign the MoU with Petronet in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. At Tellurian, we look forward to a long and prosperous partnership with Petronet in the Driftwood project," Tellurian's president and CEO Meg Gentle said.

The announcement came after PM Modi’s meeting with the CEOs of top oil companies based in the US on Saturday.

It turns out that Tellurian was one of the main sponsors behind the ‘Howdy, Modi’ event that was held in Houston on 22 September.

Howdy Modi’s official website lists Tellurian as one of its sponsors
Howdy Modi’s official website lists Tellurian as one of its sponsors
(Screenshot: howdymodi.org)

The event was organised by the Texas India Forum, with US President Donald Trump and several US Senators and members of Congress as guests. Around 50,000 people – mostly the Indian diaspora – are reported to have attended the event.

Petronet and Tellurian

Petronet is a Joint Venture between four Public Sector Undertaking companies in India:

  • GAIL (India) Limited
  • Oil & Natural Gas Corporation Limited
  • Indian Oil Corporation Limited
  • Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL)

Petronet has two terminals:

  • In Dahej (Gujarat) which is a joint venture with the Adani Group. The Rs 1,150 crore solid cargo port is in the Dahej Special Economic Zone.
  • Kochi LNG terminal in the SEZ of Puthuvypeen in Kochi, Kerala.

Tellurian is a Houston-based natural gas company founded by Lebanese American businessman Charif Souki in 2016.

According to a report in Houston Chronicle, under the deal between the two companies, Petronet has pledged to invest $2.5 billion or Rs 17,700 crore in Tellurian’s proposed Driftwood LNG export terminal in Lake Charles, Louisiana, in exchange for the rights to 5 million metric tons of LNG per year over the lifespan of the project.

The announcement of the MoU was one of the big-ticket deals signed during PM Modi’s visit and many in US saw this as proof of India’s intent to become a major buyer from American energy companies.

(With inputs from PTI)

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