Saudi Aramco revives stake acquisition talks with Reliance Industries
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Saudi Aramco revives stake acquisition talks for Reliance’s O2C unit

29 Apr 2021 (Last Updated April 29th, 2021 16:09)

Saudi Aramco has reportedly revived negotiations to acquire 20% stake in India-based Reliance Industries Limited's (RIL) oil refining and petrochemical unit through a mix of cash-and-share deal.

Saudi Aramco revives stake acquisition talks for Reliance’s O2C unit
Saudi Aramco plans to purchase stake in Reliance’s oil refining and petrochemical unit. Credit: Dimitry Anikin on Unsplash.

Saudi Aramco has reportedly revived negotiations to acquire 20% stake in India-based Reliance Industries Limited’s (RIL) oil refining and petrochemical unit through a mix of cash-and-share deal.

The oil-to-chemicals (O2C) unit comprises two oil refineries at Jamnagar in Gujarat, as well as petrochemical assets.

Citing three people familiar with the matter, the Financial Times reported that the talks were held in the recent weeks to finalise the stake acquisition deal, which was first announced in 2019.

Estimated to be $15bn in 2019, this deal was expected to be finalised in 2020 but was delayed due to Covid-19 and its impact on the Saudi firm’s finances.

Aramco is considering paying for the deal initially with its shares and then through staggered cash payments over several years.

Details on the proportion of shares and cash, as well as the terms, are yet to be finalised.

This stake acquisition will enable Aramco to gain a ready 500,000-barrels-per-day market in India.

The O2C business has been valued at $75bn by Reliance in 2019.

Saudi Aramco also owns an equity stake in an O2C project at Zhejiang in China, along with a crude supply agreement.

This week media reports emerged that Saudi Arabia was in talks with an undisclosed energy company to sell its 1% stake in Saudi Aramco.

The deal may be executed in the next two years.