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Tuesday, September 22, 1998 Published at 17:40 GMT 18:40 UK

World: South Asia

India to offer tax incentives to oil companies

The Indian government says it will offer generous tax incentives to foreign companies interested in developing the country's oil and gas reserves.

The statement came at the end of a conference in London organised by the British department of trade and industry convened to discuss India's energy requirements.

The conference heard that unless India encourages foreign companies to exploit its own natural resources it will soon become one of the world's largest importers of oil and gas. A BBC South Asia analyst says India has in the past had difficulties encouraging large-scale investment from foreign companies because of its poor infrastructure and high levels of bureaucracy.

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