Reliance-Saudi Aramco $15 billion deal is going through due diligence before final decision

Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh AmbaniBCCL
The mega deal for Saudi Aramco's $15 billion stake in the oil to chemicals business of Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) is going through due diligence and a decision will be taken after a review, Saudi Aramco CEO said on Monday.

Amin Nasser, CEO, Saudi Arabian Oil Company commented on the status of the potential transaction with RIL in a post earnings call with analysts.

"With regard to the Reliance deal, all I can say at this stage, it's going through due diligence. So, depending on the due diligence, we will make our decision after we complete the due diligence on that deal," Aramco CEO said.

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"This is a big deal. So we need to take our time to review and then decide based on the outcome of the due diligence study," Nasser added.

Speaking at the company's annual general meeting in July, RIL Chairman, Mukesh Ambani had said the deal involving the world's largest oil producer -- Aramco picking up a minority stake in refinery business of RILis on track as the two sides remain committed to a long term partnership.

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.

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"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.

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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.

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