Bharat Petroleum Corporation (BPCL), the country’s second-largest fuel retailer, hopes the disinvestment of Government of India’s share in BPCL and Numaligarh Refinery (NRL) happen concurrently, senior company executives told analysts during a call.
They said the company has already extended the opportunity of right of first refusal to the Assam government for the proposed stake sale of BPCL’s 61.65 per cent stake in NRL and expects the Expression of Interest (EoI) for BPCL’s stake sale to be floated before the end of the current month.
“The board has decided to give an opportunity to the government of Assam first as they have the right of first refusal. The letter has already gone and depending on the response we will take action to ensure that the sale is made to a government company in the oil sector as per the CCEA decision,” an executive said. \
He added the same advisors appointed for BPCL stake sale will be conducting the evaluation including both the asset valuer and the transaction advisor and the process followed will be as guided by DIPAM guidelines.
The executives also said disinvestment of BPCL’s share in NRL will be a relatively simple process as compared to BPCL stake sale. The company had last Thursday reportedly written to Assam Chief Secretary requesting the state government to express its interest in buying NRL within two weeks.
“This will be a much simpler job as compared to BPCL and in any case we are very confident that this can be done concurrently with BPCL if not earlier. We are confident that NRL transaction is not going to upset government’s time schedule for BPCL disinvestment,” a BPCL said.
He said the company’s plan to invest in NRL’s refinery expansion will have to be put on hold and BPCL will now not be involved in the plan.