NEW DELHI (Reuters) – State-run oil giant Saudi Aramco is in talks with several Indian refiners and hopes to land a joint venture deal by 2018, the company’s chief executive told Reuters on Sunday.
Aramco, wants to tap rising demand growth opportunities and invest in the world’s third biggest consumer.
Aramco wants to buy a stake in the planned 1.2 million barrels per day (bpd) refinery in India’s west coast, India’s oil minister said in June.
The world’s biggest oil producer is investing in refineries abroad to help lock in demand for its crude and expand its market share ahead of its initial public offering next year.
Nasser said Aramco is interested in investing in India’s downstream sector – refining, petrochemicals and fuel retailing including lubricants.
Earlier this year Saudi Arabia pledged billions of dollars of investment in projects in Indonesia and Malaysia to ensure long-term oil supply deals.
The International Energy Agency estimates India’s refining capacity will lag fuel demand going forward, requiring investment in new plants.
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