State-owned Hindustan Petroleum Corporation has joined the Indian consortium negotiating buying a 49% stake in Russia’s Vankor Cluster oilfields, PTI reported on Monday. Originally, ONGC Videsh Ltd, or OVL, had signed a Memorandum of Understanding to explore buying stake in Suzunskoye, Tagulskoye and Lodochnoye fields, which are collectively known as the Vankor Cluster.

Later, Indian Oil Corporation, Oil India and Bharat PetroResources, a unit of BPCL, joined the consortium. Now, HPCL has also joined the talks.

Russia’s national oil company Rosneft, which owns the fields, is keen to retain the majority stake and sell only up to 49%. Meanwhile, ONGC Videsh Ltd wants to keep the largest share of 20-26%. This leaves OIL-IOC-BPRL-HPCL together a share of around 23.9%.

Last year, OVL acquired 15% stake in Russia’s second-biggest oilfield of Vankor for $1.27 billion (Rs 81.90 billion). Then, it bought an additional 11% for $930 million (Rs 59.90 billion). The 26% stake would give OVL 7.31 million tonnes of oil, while the other four companies with their 23.9% share would get 6.56 million tonnes of oil at a cost of around $2.02 billion (Rs 130.3 billion).

Vankorneft, a subsidiary of Rosneft, is developing the Vankor oil and gas condensate field, situated in the northern part of eastern Siberia.

The OIL-IOC-BPRL consortium has also taken another 29.9% stake in a separate Taas-Yuryakh oilfield in East Siberia for $1.12 billion (Rs 72.2 billion). Thus, the total investments by Indian companies in Russian oilfields will give it 15.18 million tonnes of oil equivalent.