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India is ready to give Saudi Aramco a 50 percent stake in a planned oil refinery

INDIA (OBSERVATORY) –┬áIndia is expected to give Saudi Aramco a 50 percent stake in a 1.2 million bpd refinery it plans to build on its western coast, a move that will give the kingdom a new stable outlet for its oil, an informed source said.

The source, who declined to be identified because of the sensitivity of the talks, said an agreement could be announced on Wednesday during Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih’s visit to New Delhi to attend the World Energy Forum.

Like major oil producers, Aramco wants to capitalize on growing demand and investment in the world’s third-largest crude consumer. Last year, the company opened an office in Delhi.

India has so far set out plans to increase its refining capacity by 77 percent to around 8.8 million bpd by 2030.

“There are some last-minute negotiations on small issues, but both countries are almost ready to announce a deal on Wednesday,” the source told Reuters.

Aramco was not immediately available for comment. Aramco representatives held a meeting with their Indian counterparts on Tuesday.