Burma and India Sign for Offshore Gas Exploration

Narinjara News

The Burmese junta's oil and gas agency and an Indian resource company signed an agreement for the exploration of natural gas in the offshore plot A-7 in the seas of Arakan State in western Burma on Thursday.

According to a Burmese government media report, Burmese officials, including six ministers from the junta, attended the signing ceremony. R.D. Goral, the director of Gail of India, and Min Min Aung, the president of the Singapore based Silver Wave Energy, signed the agreement with the Burmese Oil and Gas Enterprise.

The A-7 plot will be operated as a joint venture between Gail India Ltd. and Silver Wave Energy.

Gail, the Indian resource giant, has a ten percent share in the ventures exploring both A-1 and A-3 plots, which are being operated by a consortium led by the Korean company Daewoo International.

India is not only cooperating with the Burmese military junta in the business sector, but also in the military sector. India has lately been facing criticisms from international organizations and Burmese pro-democracy activists for its engagement with the Burmese junta and its sales of military hardware, including some helicopters.

Many Arakanese have expressed dismay over India's investment to acquire natural gas from Burma, a venture which will not benefit the local people but will serve to perpetuate their suffering under the Burmese military junta - reputed to be the most brutal regime in the world - reported one Shwe Gas Movement activist.