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Reliance to create 5 lakh direct jobs

Mukesh Ambani has promised that the rippling effect of the company’s retail initiative would create many multiples of indirect jobs.
By HT Correspondent | None, Mumbai
UPDATED ON JUN 12, 2008 08:43 PM IST

India's largest private sector firm, Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) will create over 5 lakh direct jobs in the country through its organised retail business over the next five years, chairman Mukesh Ambani said on Thursday at the company’s 34th annual general meeting. He promised that the rippling effect of the company’s retail initiative would create many multiples of indirect jobs.

The largest Indian private sector company is slowly stepping up as one of the largest employers in India. The largest employer is Indian Railways that employs more than 15 lakh people.

Reliance Industries currently employs a little more than 25,000 people on its own and while combined with its subsidiaries the group employs more than 48,000 people. Reliance Retail, a 100 per cent subsidiary has investment plans of over Rs 25,000 crore over five years to roll out retail stores across the country. So far it has invested close to Rs 5,000 crore in the retail venture.

“We have now grown nearly 700 stores comprising fourteen distinct formats across 60 towns and cities. We estimate the business will generate half a million jobs directly and many times that number indirectly” RIL Chairman Mukesh Ambani told share holders at the 34th Annul General Meeting of the company.

Over the last 12 months, Reliance Retail has formed partnerships with leading overseas players like Marks and Spencer, Pearle, Apple, and Vornado.

As part of its transformation, Reliance Retail would create rural business hubs, which would be centres of aggregation of farm produce," Ambani said. The hubs would ensure supply of quality farm inputs and provisions of products and services to rural customers.

Stating the company would commission its greenfield refinery in Jamnagar in the next six months Ambani said. It will also commission the Krishna Godavari basin oil fields later this year. He said that RIL would start selling natural gas this year at a rate of $25 per barrel of oil equivalent and it would result in a savings of Rs 85,000 crore for the Indian consumer.

With the fuel coming from the KG basin would imply an annual savings of over 1.14 lakh crore in the country's energy bills, Ambani said. The company would commission its 9 lakh tonnes per annum polypropylene capacity at Jamnagar this year, he said.

RIL would also focus on alternate energy as a potential avenue of growth. "It would be a natural extension of our conventional energy portfolio," Ambani said, without divulging much details of the project.

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