Discussions with India's Reliance continuing: Aramco chief

Following the collapse of the deal, Reliance announced plans to restructure and repurpose its oil and gas business, transferring the company's gasification assets to a wholly owned subsidiary

  
Aramco's President and CEO, Amin H. Nasser, speaks during the fourth annual Future Investment Initiative in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, January 27, 2021.

Aramco's President and CEO, Amin H. Nasser, speaks during the fourth annual Future Investment Initiative in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, January 27, 2021.

REUTERS/Ahmed Yosri

DHAHRAN/LONDON: Saudi Aramco Chief Executive Amin Nasser insisted discussions with conglomerate Reliance Industries are continuing despite the collapse of plans to buy a $15 billion stake in the Indian firm’s oil-to-chemicals business.

“It’s still on in terms of discussion with Reliance as investment in India.”

Following the collapse of the deal, Reliance announced plans to restructure and repurpose its oil and gas business, transferring the company’s gasification assets to a wholly owned subsidiary.

The move will also expand the group’s gasification project at its giant Jamnagar refinery to both step up hydrogen production and increase the manufacture of olefins.

Nasser said: “They need to do their restructuring and we will continue the discussion with Reliance.”

When Reliance announced the deal two years ago it was seeking to pare down its debt but has since reduced its liabilities.

Reliance was linked with a bid for the UK’s telecom giant BT in recent days but the conglomerate dismissed the speculation insisting it had no plans to bid for the business.

Reliance is owned by Mukesh Ambani, India’s richest man who has a net worth of around $94 billion.

Yasir Al-Rumayyan, chair of Saudi Aramco and head of the Kingdom’s Public Investment Fund, joined Reliance’s board as the group sought to build closer ties with the Kingdom.

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