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Indian Oil Corp to acquire oilfields in Africa  

IOC to expand overseas, will acquire oil fields in Africa

The country's second-biggest refiner Indian Oil Corp is all set to acquire the oilfields in Africa. This step came in as part of a $1 billion overseas investment plan.In a statement Mr Brij Mohan Bansal said, "Africa is top of our list to buy assets because it is near India and has good quality crude." Further adding he said, "We are planning retail outlets in Indonesia."After the government had freed gasoline prices from its control last month, the state-run Indian Oil has renewed plans to expand overseas. According to the chairman Mr. Bansal the refiner has set aside $1 billion for acquisitions overseas. The government has given the power to the refiners and eventually now they will be allowed to set diesel rates which would in turn help in increasing the cash flow. According to Vinay Nair, a Mumbai-based analyst with Khandwala Securities Ltd, "Africa offers many grades of crude and gives refiners security of supplies to have fields there," adding further he said, "They will, however, still need financial support from the government to help make profits."Initially in July last year the refiner had delayed crude-processing and pipeline projects overseas, including Nigeria and Turkey. The reason for such a situation to have arrived was the reduced cash flow which was because of selling fuels below cost. Indian Oil and Turkish builder Calik Holding had planned to spend $4.9 billion to build a 300,000 barrel-a-day refinery in Ceyhan on the Mediterranean coast.It had also been planned by companies like Eni SpA, Europe's fourth-largest oil company, to spend $2 billion on a pipeline from Samsun on Turkey's Black Sea coast to Ceyhan to transport as much as 1.5 million tonnes of Central Asian crude oil a day. Talking about the prices ofd the shares, the value has been increased 23 per cent in Mumbai trading this year, the increase came alongwith the three per cent gain in the benchmark Sensitive Index of the Bombay Stock Exchange.

Monday, July 19, 2010  HPCL

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