'RIL, Aramco discuss cash & share deal'

New Delhi: Reliance Industries is reported to have held talks with Saudi Aramco on a cash and share deal for sale of a 20 per cent stake in its oil refining and petrochemical arm.

Ambani had in August 2019 announced talks for the sale of a 20 per cent stake in the oil-to-chemicals (O2C) business, which comprises its twin oil refineries at Jamnagar in Gujarat and petrochemical assets, to the world's largest oil exporter.

The deal was to conclude by March 2020 but has been delayed for reasons not disclosed by either company.

Financial Times quoting sources reported that the talks have been revived in recent weeks.

Aramco is weighing paying for the stake with its shares initially and then staggered cash payments over several years, it said adding the proportion of shares versus cash was still up for debate and terms had yet to be finalised. An email sent to Reliance Industries for comments was not answered.

Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman late on Tuesday hinted at talks to sell a minority stake in the Saudi national oil company to a foreign investor. "I don't want to give any promises but there's a discussion for the acquisition of 1 per cent," he said in a television interview. He did not give details of the deal or the parties involved but added that it would be "very important in strengthening Aramco's sales in the country where this

company resides".

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