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Chevron, RIL in partnership talks

The US energy major may pick stake in Rs 27,000 crore refinery and become the first to infuse FDI in India's booming refining sector.
None | By Reuters, Mumbai
UPDATED ON MAR 30, 2006 01:09 PM IST

US energy major Chevron may pick stake in Reliance Industries' Rs 27,000 crore refinery at Jamnagar in Gujarat and become the first to infuse FDI in India's booming refining sector.

Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) chairman and managing director Mukesh Ambani is in the United States meeting top executives of Chevron for a possible pact, industry sources said. RIL officials were not immediately available for comment.

"Top officials of the two companies have had regular meetings and exchanged proposals but nothing concrete has been arrived at as of yet," the source told Reuters on Wednesday.

The source confirmed that Chevron Chairman and Chief Executive David J O'Reilly had meeting with Reliance Chairman Mukesh Ambani in the United States on Tuesday.

The 29 million tonnes per annum refinery, located in Jamnagar Special Economic Zone, is being set up for exports and the company was eyeing the multi-billion dollar high octane gasoline market in the US.

Chevron besides bringing steady source of crude supply for the refinery, may also pick a substantial volume of petroleum products produced at the new unit, sources said, adding the company is planning to tap export markets in the US and Europe for its products.

Reliance Petroleum, the wholly owned subsidiary of RIL, plans to convert the bulk of gasoline from its proposed SEZ refinery into high octane gasoline and export it to the US.

Petrol and diesel will make up for 80 per cent of the products produced by Reliance Petroleum. Typically, 70 per cent of the output will constitute auto fuels.

Also on Reliance's radar is a possible technology pact with Chevron for sourcing some of the refining process and possibly know-how for developing its 'D6' deepsea gas field in Krishna Godavari Basin in Bay of Bengal.

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