India’s largest asset sales to attract China-cautious oil majors

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NEW DELHI: China may see increasing uneasiness Oil investor For India, a top executive said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government had worked for the sale.
Bharat Petroleum Corp Finance Director N Vijayagopal said in an interview from Mumbai, “When the world becomes normal and India will be the only option, then the investment options in the oil sector will be limited.” “Most western countries would be very afraid to go into China. So, where else can they go?
Many nations, including the US, are coming together to say what they say is China’s growing threat to global trade, security and human rights. This gives India the opportunity to attract investment and bring some of its assets known as Bharat-Petroleum, such as BPCL, to global investors when the world emerges from the coronovirus epidemic.
Vijaygopal said, “Global companies are cutting capex, now conserving cash, but Exxon Mobil, Shell, BP or Saudi Aramco will not suffer losses.” “When they return by choosing demand, they will have cash available to invest.”
India, with a population of over 1.3 billion, is the world’s third largest oil consumer, providing an attractive alternative to China for large oil companies looking for a stable market to expand. Some have already indicated interest in BPCL.
Nevertheless, almost every major oil company, from Exxon Mobil Corp to Royal Dutch Shell Plc, has invested in China’s energy chain, with new commitments coming from companies such as Saudi Aramco to tap the world’s largest energy consumer .
In India, a country for its growing oil hunger, fuel demand took a major hit from a national lockdown, announced in March, to control the virus outbreak. However, a series of comforts helped it regain lost demand within a very short period of time, although the return of growth is still a long way to go.
Refineries, including BPCL, that processing was slowed are now increasing capacity. “My refinery is running at around 83% of normal capacity and our sales were about 76% of normal sales in May,” he said. “Therefore, we have no reason to be pessimistic about our ability to be normal.”
Indian refiners, who had come under double strikes of destruction due to oil price volatility and demand, saw their stock prices fall. BPCL was valued at around $ 7.4 billion in early February, which has now fallen to about $ 5.7 billion.
Vijayagopal, however, does not see this as a problem. Suitors will give the company the valuation of its assets and the flexibility to jump back from the crisis, he said. Meanwhile, the government has now extended the deadline for submitting preliminary bids for the company twice to 31 July.
BPCL is the third largest refinery in India and the second largest fuel retailer. Its market share was 21% in the financial year ended March 2019.
“When someone gives a price, they don’t go to give the price for six months,” he said. “We have a 100-year history and we will live for another 100 years as an energy company, even if petrol and diesel are not.”

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