$15bn RIL-Saudi Aramco deal expected to close this year; Mukesh Ambani

By Amirtha P S, Desk Reporter
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Mukesh Ambani
Mukesh Ambani, Chairman and MD of Reliance Industries Ltd.

Indian multinational conglomerate, Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) expects to materialize the company’s deal with the world’s largest oil-exporting firm, Saudi Aramco this year, the chairman and managing director Mukesh Ambani said at the 44th Annual General Meeting (AGM) of RIL.

Meanwhile, Yasir Al-Rumayyan, chairman of Saudi Aramco and the Governor of the Public Investment Fund (PIF), has been inducted into the board of Reliance as an independent director.

During the RIL AGM in 2019, Ambani announced talks for the sale of a 20 percent stake in the oil-to-chemicals (O2C) business which comprises its twin oil refineries at Jamnagar in Gujarat and petrochemical assets to Aramco in a deal valued at $15 billion.

At the AGM, Mr. Ambani said, “As an important part of this vision of achieving accelerated growth, we look forward to welcoming Saudi Aramco as a strategic partner in our O2C business. Despite several challenges due to COVID-19, we have made substantial progress in the past year in our discussions.”

The sale did not go through after demand and prices crashed in 2020 due to the pandemic. O2C is a very important business for the Indian conglomerate. Last fiscal year, RIL carved out its O2C business into a separate entity, to facilitate the onboarding of strategic partners like Aramco.

O2C undertaking of the company comprises of business consisting of refining, petrochemicals, fuel retail and aviation fuel (majority interest only) and bulk wholesale marketing businesses together with its assets and liabilities. O2C’s aim is to maximize crude to chemicals conversion while creating a sustainable growth business.

During the AGM, Mr. Ambani revealed the roadmap for the clean energy business, as part of which, RIL will set up four facilities namely integrated solar photovoltaic Giga factory, advanced energy storage Giga factory, electrolyzer Giga factory and fuel cell Giga factory. 

Related: US-based EIG-led consortium closes deal to buy Aramco pipelines business