RIL task force for Jammu and Kashmir, Ladakh investments

Mumbai: Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) Chairman Mukesh Ambani on Monday said that the company is committed to support the developmental needs of the new Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh and that it will create a task force to explore investment opportunities in region.

At the 42nd Annual General Meeting of the company, he said that the company would make a lot of announcements on the developmental initiatives it plans to take in newly-created Union Territories.

"We stand committed to support the people of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh in all their developmental needs. Reliance will create a special task force and you will see a lot of announcements on Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh and our developmental initiatives in the coming months," Ambani said.

His statement comes days after the Central government annulled Article 370 of the Constitution which gave special status to the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir.

The government also bifurcated the state into the Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) and Ladakh.

About the philanthropic work of the Reliance Foundation, Ambani, during the AGM, said that it has touched the lives of more than 2.9 crore people across the country and through its rural transformation programmes, improved the livelihoods of over 80 lakh people across 19,000 villages.

"Last year, our foundation provided relief and rehabilitation to people impacted by natural calamities in Kerala, Andhra Pradesh and Odisha. As we speak, our teams are involved in relief and rehabilitation efforts in Maharashtra, Karnataka and Kerala," he said.

To a debt-free future

On the sidelines of the AGM, RIL chairman Ambani on Monday said that the group has a clear roadmap to become zero net-debt company in 18 months as he sells stakes in oil and chemical business to Saudi Aramco and fuel retailing business to BP.

Describing the deal as the largest foreign direct investment in India, Ambani said Saudi Aramco will acquire 20% stake in RIL's oil-to-chemical business for an enterprise value of $75 billion.

Meanwhile, British energy giant BP will pay about Rs 7,000 crore for acquiring a 49% stake in Reliance Industries' fuel retailing network, Ambani said. The statement came in the wake of rising debt at the group level that reached a level of group Rs 1,54,478 crore in the last fiscal.

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