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IndiaOil Eyes Entire Stake of BP Holding

Company takes another step torwards integrated-transnational energy company status...

State-owned IndianOil Corporation (IOC) is bidding for British Petroleum's retail business in Malaysia and Singapore, even as it is picking up Premier Oil's 35 per cent stake in an Assam oil and gas block in its efforts to transform itself from a refiner and oilmarketer into an integrated transnational energy company.

Chairman M S Ramachandran said his company will bid for the purchase of BP's entire 70 per cent holding in BP Malaysia Bhd which owns 272 petrol stations and a 50-million litre terminal.

BP accounts for over 10 per cent of Malaysia's fuel market and 13 per cent of cooking gas sales.

IOC will also bid to buy BP Singapore that owns 30 petrol stations with 12 per cent market share and cooking gas business.

If IOC eventually buys BP's stake, it will add two more overseas markets to its business spectrum after Sri Lanka and Mauritius.

"Our investment in buying BP's Malaysia and Singapore operations would be in excess of Rs 200 crore," Ramachandran said.

In the Assam gasfield, IOC will pay almost $ 1 million to pick up Premier Oil's 35 per cent stake in Cachar block in the Arakan basin.