Shares in Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Industries fell more than 4 per cent after the revelation that the $15bn deal with Saudi Aramco had been called off. RIL said in August 2019 that it had signed a “non-binding letter of intent” to sell 20 per cent of its refinery business to Saudi Aramco at a valuation of about $75bn. But talks stagnated with the onset of the pandemic, which caused turbulence in energy markets and hurt Saudi Aramco’s finances, exacerbating existing reservations within the kingdom about the deal’s high valuation.
Reliance said that the companies had “mutually determined that it would be beneficial for both parties to re-evaluate the proposed investment”. On the first day of trading after the announcement, shares in Reliance fell 4.3 per cent to Rs 2,365 in Mumbai, contributing to one of the worst days for India’s stock market in months. Ambani had continued to suggest that the deal would be finalised, most recently this year, and the two companies had held talks over a potential cash and share deal.