Inter-ministerial group clears BPCL sale bid documents

An inter-ministerial group (IMG) has approved the bid documents for sale of state-run oil refiner, Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd, and a notice seeking bids will be issued after a select group of ministers approves it, reports citing sources said. 

The inter-ministerial group comprising representatives from the ministries of finance, petroleum, law, corporate affairs and department of disinvestment has approved Expression of Interest (EoI) and Preliminary Information Memorandum (PIM) of the company.
This will now have to be approved by the 'Alternative Mechanism' consisting of key cabinet ministers, following which, an EoI seeking interest from potential buyers will be floated, reports said, adding the EoI along with PIM was likely to be out in the market within this month.
The government plans to sell its entire 53.29 per cent stake in BPCL, which operates four refineries in Mumbai, Kochi, Bina and Numaligarh with a combined capacity of 38.3 million tonnes per annum. 
The Numaligarh refinery, however, will not be part of this sale and instead will be sold to a PSU. The buyer will still get 35.3 million tonnes of refining capacity.
BPCL has about 14 per cent of India's total refining capacity of 249.4 million tonnes and about one-fifth of the fuel market share in the world's fastest-growing energy market. 
BPCL owns 15,177 petrol pumps and 6,011 LPG distributor agencies in the country. Besides, it has 51 LPG (liquefied petroleum gas) bottling plants.
The company distributes 21 per cent of petroleum products consumed in the country by volume as of March this year and has more than a fifth of the 250 aviation fuel stations in the country.
The sale will go through a two-stage bidding process, with invitation of request for proposal or RFP in the first stage followed by due diligence-cum-bidding by qualified bidders in the second stage.
The CCEA had already approved BPCL stake sale in November last year, following which an inter-ministerial group (IMG) was constituted. The IMG in turn appointed advisers for the transaction, including merchant bankers, asset valuers and legal advisers.
The 'Alternative Mechanism' approves reserve or base price as well as price bids.