Reliance Industries is close to striking a deal to buy crude oil from Cairn India's prolific Rajasthan oil fields and the first parcel may reach its Jamnagar refineries by the fourth week of November.
Since the time government allowed Cairn to sell crude oil from its Rajasthan fields to private firms, it has been in dialogue with RIL, an industry source said.
A deal to sell seven parcels of 200,000 barrels each (cumulative 1.4 million barrels or 0.2 million tonnes) this year is about to be concluded, the source said.
The oil will be shipped in trucks from the Barmer district fields to the twin refineries of RIL in neighbouring state of Gujarat.
The first parcel may be sold as early as November 20, the source said.
Spokespersons of both RIL and Cairn were not immediately available for comments.
Cairn is being forced to sell oil to private firms after the three public sector companies nominated to buy Rajasthan crude refused to take the entire output from the fields.
This will be the first time ever that crude oil from a domestic field will be sold to a private refiner. So far, all the crude oil that is produced in India is consumed by PSU refiners.
The source said RIL will pay the same as the one agreed between Cairn and government-nominated buyers MRPL, IOC and HPCL.