Today you have presented the papers which will in a way formalise the ONGC-HPCL merger. Help us understand the timelines for it and how the valuations will be done?
Dharmendra Pradhan: This process will be completed in this financial year. This was mentioned in the budget speech of honourable Finance Minister. This realignment of financial re-alignment of ONGC and HPCL was later later given an approval by the cabinet. We will try to complete all this process in this financial year.
With respect to the valuations many reports are coming and especially with now HPCL categorically saying that they are not willing to pay a premium but that ONGC should pay a premium for HPCL but ONGC is not willing to do the same so how will those nitty-gritty’s be worked out?
Dharmendra Pradhan: Let us not get into speculation. It is too early to get into this kind of assessment. The competent authority will appoint a valuer and the professional people will value the price of HPCL and after that both the companies will close their financial deal. Let us not get into speculation at this stage.
Since ONGC-HPCL is one the first mergers that we are seeing, going forward how does the trajectory look like especially will we see IOC, Oil India, the other companies, also go for mergers?
Dharmendra Pradhan: Let us complete this process first and we will look into the experience and the functional nuances of the arrangement.I am hopeful India is moving to the big table and looking into our market capacity, looking into our requirement in future in energy sector, the way we are moving towards a greater developmental trajectory, more and more integration is needed.
Since you are saying more integration is needed with respect to how things are developing across the world, how will we see this merger? In future how will they really take on to the big oil global behemoths?
Dharmendra Pradhan: Certainly you will appreciate now that the new arrangement will be integrated one starting from E&P to touch down point in the market. If the management of a group will have to take care all the aspects and a 360 degree aspect, then the management will be more effective and efficient to look into the energy needs of the country. This kind of arrangement is going to be a first in India and I am hopeful that it will work.
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