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RIL to put $9bn in Jamnagar

RIL will focus more on the agricultural and rural sectors, besides increasing investment in innovation, report Indulal PM and MC Vaijayanti.
Hindustan Times | By Indulal PM and MC Vaijayanti, Mumbai
UPDATED ON OCT 12, 2007 10:22 PM IST

Reliance Industries (RIL) will invest over $9 billion to integrate its petrochemical facility in Jamnagar.

Reliance currently runs the world's largest greenfield oil refinery in Jamnagar with a production capacity of 6.61 lakh barrels per day, which is expected to double by 2008.

"We are building the world's largest integrated combined cycle coke gasification complex in Jamnagar with a capacity of 6 million tonnes. Over the next 3 to 4 years, we will investing $8-9 billion in Jamnagar," Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani told shareholders.

The complex will gassify all the petroleum coke from the refinery. The company is also building a new petrochemicals complex, the largest in the world, in Jamnagar with a production capacity of 2 million tonnes per year.

Ambani said the company is looking at acquisitions abroad to extend its global reach. "Traditionally, Reliance has grown by building businesses from scratch. This strategy cannot entirely drive growth in an era of intense competition and rapid technological change. As a shift in our strategy, Reliance is therefore actively pursuing an acquisition mode of growth," he said.

RIL will focus more on the agricultural and rural sectors, besides increasing investment in innovation.

"Oil and gas exploration and production is on the threashold of unprecedented value creation for Reliance. It is set to fundamentally change Reliance's earnings growth profile," Ambani said. So far this year, the company has 10 new oil discoveries in the eastern and western coasts. Ambani said Reliance was also increasing its paraxylene capacity. "Reliance will have 15 per cent of global paraxylene capacity," he said.

The Reliance chairman said the company's retail venture, which had set up 300 stores in 30 cities and employed 6,000 staff, did not threaten small shopkeepers and traders. Reliance is spending more than $5.5 billion in its retail business, but plans have run into protests from small traders, forcing it to shut down some stores and lay off workers.

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