By P.R. Venkat
The Indian government has extended the deadline to submit bids for Bharat Petroleum Corp., giving interested parties another month to make offers for the oil-and-gas company.
The closing date has been extended to Nov. 16 in light of requests from potential bidders and difficulties caused by the pandemic, the Department of Investment and Public Asset Management said on its website Thursday.
India has partially eased the pandemic lockdown it imposed in late March to contain the spread of the pandemic. Despite that, travel and business operations are yet to return to pre-pandemic levels.
The government had in March invited bids for its 53% stake in BPCL, the country's second-largest oil retailer, as part of the efforts to speed up the privatization process. It has a nearly 26% share of the market, with about 14,800 retail outlets.
BPCL, which is listed on the Bombay Stock Exchange, has a market capitalization of over $10 billion.
BPCL is also a refining company with an installed refining capacity of 38.3 million metric tons a year and accounts for 15% of India's total refining capacity.
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