The blockbuster deal involving the world’s largest oil producer — Aramco picking up a minority stake in refinery business of India’s largest corporate house — Reliance Industries (RIL), is on track as the two sides remain committed to a long term partnership, RIL chairman Mukesh Ambani said on Wednesday.
Speaking at the company’s first virtual annual general meeting, Ambani said that due to unforeseen circumstances in the energy market, the deal (with Aramco) has not progressed as per original timeline. In the meanwhile, company’s equity requirements have already been met.
“Nevertheless, we at Reliance value our over two-decade long relationship with Saudi Aramco and are committed to a long-term partnership,” he said.
The RIL and Aramco deal has been in the works for some time and doubts were raised on its early completion due to Covid-19 outbreak and lockdowns.
The deal between Reliance and Aramco involves the Indian entity offering at least 20 per cent stake in a special purpose vehicle covering refining, petrochemicals and marketing. RIL board has already approved hiving-off its $75 billion O2C business into a separate entity. This is subject to approval of the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT).
Ambani announced that the company will spin off its oil-to-chemical business into a separate subsidiary by early 2021 after regulatory approvals, and detailed plans of also moving into green energy space.