Shares of state-run oil refining company Bharat Petroleum rose as much as 6 percent to hit an intraday high of ₹ 482.40 after its board of directors approved sale of Numaligarh Refinery in Assam. "Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited approved the proposal for sale of entire equity shares held by BPCL in Numaligarh Refinery Ltd (NRL) (constituting 61 .65 percent of the total equity capital of NRL), a material subsidiary company of BPCL to a consortium of Oil India Limited, Engineers India Limited and government of Assam," Bharat Petroleum said in a press release.
Consolidated net worth of Numaligarh Refinery as of 31st March, 2020 was Rs.5, 292 crore equivalent to 14.18 percent of the consolidated net worth of BPCL, the company said in a stock exchange filing.
BPCL will sell stake in the refinery for a total consideration of ₹ 9875 crore to a consortium of Oil India, Engineers India and Assam government. The sale of Numaligarh Refinery clears the way for privatization of India's second-largest fuel retailer. Numaligarh Refinery operates a 3 million tonnes per annum oil refinery in Assam.
Post NRL sale, BPCL would be left with three refineries at Mumbai, Kochi (Kerala) and Bina (Madhya Pradesh).
The government is planning to sell its entire 52.98 percent stake in BPCL in the nation's biggest privatization till date. Vedanta Group and private firms Apollo Global and I Squared Capital's Indian unit Think Gas have put in an expression of interest for buying the government's stake.
The government has already indicated that it expects to complete BPCL privatization by the first half of the fiscal beginning April (2021-22).