By Modupe Gbadeyanka India has agreed to invest about $15 billion in the Nigerian oil and gas sector, the Ministry of Petroleum Resources has disclosed. A statement issued on Monday by the Director of Press in the Ministry, Mr Idang Alibi, disclosed that the agreement was facilitated on behalf of the country by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr Ibe Kachikwu. It was explained that the negotiations were part of the three-day investment drive of the Minister to India. As part of the deal, India will make an upfront payment for crude purchase to Nigeria and will be repaid on the basis of firm Term Crude Contracts over some years and in consideration for Indian public sector companies collaborating in the refining sector as well as exploration and production activities. Mr Kachikwu\u2019s Indian counterpart, Mr Shri Dharmendra Pradhan, acknowledged that Nigeria was one of the largest trading partners of India in Africa which is dominated by import of crude oil and gas. Both countries have agreed to work on a Memorandum of Understanding to facilitate investments by India in Nigeria. Few weeks ago, the Indian Vice President was in Nigeria on the invitation of his Nigerian counterpart, where trade relations were discussed.