Reliance Industries may propose to sell or lease out its 1,432 petrol pumps to Indian Oil Corporation even as it will start reopening its outlets,shut a year ago,on Monday.
To begin with,outlets in Gujarat and Maharashtra will be reopened. Reliance will buy petrol and diesel from Essar to fuel its outlets in Gujarat.
Reliance may propose to transfer its petrol stations into a joint venture company run by the state firm,a source said.
The company had invested about Rs 5,000 crore in setting up the retail network and it does not make sense to keep them idle, he said.
The partnership with IOC will also help the company overcome the handicap of not being able to use fuel from its two refineries at Jamnagar as they have been converted into only-for-exports units.
Besides,it will also enable the pumps to avail subsidy if the government doesnt free fuel pricing while international oil prices bounce back. But IOC is yet to take a view on the feelers sent by Reliance,the source said.
A Reliance spokesperson did not return calls made to get the companys comments.
Incidentally,Reliance was buying petrol and diesel from refiners like IOC and the Ruias-owned Essar Oil till March last year. From Monday (March 16),it will start selling petrol and diesel from some of these outlets,a source said.