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RIL inks pact with BP to supply aviation fuel, run retail outlets

Wednesday, 07 Aug 2019
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The Reliance Industries (RIL) and British oil and gas company BP will form a new joint venture (JV) company to run retail fuel stations and supply aviation fuel. While RIL will hold 51 percent, BP will hold the rest in the JV that will assume ownership of RIL’s existing fuel retail network of over 1,400 outlets.

The JV will also get access to RIL’s aviation fuel business currently operating at over 30 airports across India.

The JV partners aim to grow the fuel retail outlets to up to 5,500 sites over the next five years. In 2019, the Adani Group announced a JV with French oil and gas company Total to run LNG regasification terminals and retail fuel stations across India. It is anticipated that the final agreements will be signed during 2019, and subject to regulatory and other approvals, the transaction will be completed in the first half of 2020.

The JV expands the partnership between the two firms that began in 2011 when BP acquired a 30 percent interest in RIL’s portfolio of exploration and production interests offshore India, including the KG D6 gas-producing block off the east coast. BP will bring its international experience in convenience and fuel retailing and aviation operations.

Castrol lubricants will also be sold across the venture’s network. It will seek to expand its reach, broadening access through mobile fuelling units and providing packaged fuels to customers, including home-delivery.

The venture is also expected to benefit from access to competitive fuel supplies from RIL’s Jamnagar refining complex in Gujarat on the west coast of India. Since formation of their partnership in 2011, the two companies have invested over USD two billion in deep water exploration and production.

The partners have recently sanctioned three new developments in the KG D6 block -- the ‘R-Series’ fields in 2017, the Satellites cluster in 2018 and the MJ project earlier in 2019. With total investment of around USD five billion, development of the three projects together is expected produce a total of around one billion cu ft of gas a day. The first project, the R-Series development, is expected onstream in 2020.

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