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Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) has said it has no objection to an audit by any government agency. The statement comes in the backdrop of the national auditor Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) on Thursday ruling out a performance audit of RIL-operated Krishna-Godavari oil and gas block off Andhra Pradesh coast. The CAG had said it does not conduct performance audit of private operators.
"We appreciate the fact that the CAG is in agreement that it does not conduct performance audit of private operators and expect that no such performance related audit issues applicable to the Government will be applied to any such audit," the company said in a statement. "As always RIL is fully confident of its technical capabilities and welcomes comments on operational matters if such comments come from experts having the requisite knowledge of the complexities of deep water operations in Oil and Gas sector," it added.
RIL also clarified that it has never contested the government's right to conduct an audit by any agency, including the CAG, as provided in its Production Sharing Contract (PSC) with the government. "At all times, RIL has fully co-operated with any auditor appointed by the government, including in several cases where the Government had already exercised its audit rights earlier or where such audit was beyond the period stipulated in the PSC," it said.
The CAG had reportedly objected to the government's move to narrow the scope of audit. It said the provisions of the CAG Act gives it "unfettered right of access to all records required for such audit and would override any conditions sought to be imposed on the audit process".
A meeting between CAG, the oil ministry and RIL scheduled for Oct 31 in order to begin the audit process was postponed by the ministry earlier. The CAG, in its audit report last year, had questioned some of the RIL's practices in developing the block.