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After forging a joint venture with HPCL to set up a refinery in Punjab, LN Mittal group has signed a memorandum of understanding with HPCL, Total, Gail and Oil India for jointly developing another refinery-cum-petrochemical complex in Vishakhapatnam. The 15-million-tonne/year refinery project involves about $6 billion investment.

“We have today signed an MoU for undertaking feasibility study of the mega complex,” HPCL CMD Arun Balakrishnan told media persons. The project also includes one-million-tonne olefins and aromatics complex.

He said the exact equity structure and project finances would be decided only after the feasibility studies are completed. Mittal group has already picked 49% equity stake in HPCL’s $3.6-bn Bhatinda refinery. The plant is likely to be set up in an SEZ. It is expected that the refined products would be exported to markets in South-East Asia and the Middle East.

Mittal group is also interested in venturing into country’s exploration and production sector. It may participate in the forthcoming round of bidding for exploration blocks under Nelp VII.

“We are interested in oil and gas exploration as well as refinery and petrochemical business in India. We haven’t yet seen the blocks on offer in NELP-VII, (but) we will certainly consider bidding,” an official in Arcelor-Mittal said.

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