RIL slips nearly 3% as govt seeks to block $15 bn Saudi Aramco deal

Shares of Reliance Industries (RIL) declined as much as 2.77 per cent in the early trade on the BSE on Monday after the government filed petition in the Delhi High Court (HC) seeking to block its $15 billion deal with Saudi Aramco, in view of dues of $3.5 billion in the Panna-Mukta and Tapti (PMT) oil and gas fields. 

At 09:49 am, the stock was trading over 2 per cent lower at Rs 1,566 apiece on the BSE. In comparison, the S&P BSE Sensex was trading flat at 41,667 levels, down 15 points or 0.04 per cent. 

In a counter affidavit, the oil-to-telecom behemoth said it was a ‘falsehood’ that the arbitration tribunal had passed an award requiring the company and its partners to pay $3.5 billion to the government. It said the petition was an abuse of process as “it portrays that a sum of money is due and payable under the final award and purports to compute the money payable on a basis neither found in the arbitration award nor disclosed in the petition.” READ MORE

An international arbitration tribunal issued a partial award in October 2016 in the dispute between the Government of India (GoI), BG Exploration & Production India (BG), and RIL regarding the Panna-Mukta and Tapti production sharing contracts (PSCs). The tribunal in its 2016 award determined certain issues of principle.

RIL said pursuant to the 2018 award, the government’s claim comes down very significantly — a fact which the government has not taken cognisance of and approached the Delhi HC prematurely for enforcement of its claim computed based on its interpretation of the 2016 award.

In another development, the company announced that after 25 years of operating the Panna-Mukta oil and gas fields, the Panna-Mukta and Tapti (PMT) Joint Venture partners will be handing over the PannaMukta oil and gas fields back to the government's nominee i.e. ONGC on December 21. CLICK TO READ

Business Standard is now on Telegram.
For insightful reports and views on business, markets, politics and other issues, subscribe to our official Telegram channel