BPCL to sell Oman Oil stake in Bina refinery within 10 days; NRL stake sale by 31 March, 2021

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Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL) will buy out Oman Oil Company’s shares in its Bina refinery project within the next 10 days, and is hoping to complete a separate sale of its stake in Numaligarh Refinery Ltd. (NRL) by 31 March, 2021, company sources revealed.

BPCL holds a 63.68 per cent stake in Bharat Oman Refineries Ltd (BORL), which operates a 7.8 million tonnes per annum oil refinery at Bina in Madhya Pradesh.

“Discussions to acquire 36.62 per cent stake of Oman Oil have concluded. We can come out with an announcement of the acquisition of the stake in next 10 days or so,” BPCL Director (Finance) N Vijayagopal told reporters on an earnings call. Oman Oil has now been renamed as OQ S.A.O.C.  

Before the company is privatised, BPCL will exit Numaligarh Refinery Ltd (NRL) by selling its 61.65 per cent stake to a consortium of Oil India Ltd and Engineers India Ltd, Vijayagopal said. It is selling stake because the government had as per the Assam Peace Accord, agreed to keep NRL in the public sector.

“The consortium of OIL and Engineers India Ltd will acquire 49 per cent and the rest 13.65 per cent will be sold to the government of Assam,” he said, adding the company board at its meeting on Monday approved the share purchase agreement. OIL currently holds 26 per cent equity in NRL, while the government of Assam has around 12.35 per cent. The value for 61.65 per cent stake in NRL is reportedly around Rs 7,000 crore.

Post NRL sale, BPCL would be left with three refineries at Mumbai, Kochi in Kerala and Bina. The government is selling its entire 52.98 per cent stake in BPCL in the nation’s biggest privatisation till date.

Vedanta Group and private equity firms Apollo Global and I Squared Capital’s Indian unit Think Gas have put in an expression of interest for buying the government stake.

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