Cairn expects to close Vedanta deal by Apr 15

Written by fe Bureau | New Delhi | Updated: Jan 28 2011, 07:27am hrs
Cairn Energy chief executive Bill Gammell on Thursday said that the UK company is working with the government in a consensual manner to conclude its proposed $9.6 billion sale of majority stake in its Indian business to Vedanta Resources.

Ahead of the companys financial results for the year ended December 31, 2010, which is due on March 22, Cairn informed the London Stock Exchange and the National Stock Exchange that it expects to conclude the deal before April 15. Cairn continues to work with the government in a consensual manner to secure the necessary consents and approvals for completion of the Vedanta transaction, Cairn's statement to the stock exchanges said, quoting Gammell. Completion of the deal will provide the group with the funding to continue an active programme offshore in Greenland, consider other opportunities and return a substantial proportion of the proceeds to shareholders, Cairn said. The Central government is examining Cairn's request for approval in the light of the contracts it has signed with the government and partner ONGC.

The Centre is likely to clear the deal with certain riders aimed at protecting ONGC's interest and to ensure undisrupted output from oilfields, particularly in Rajasthan.

Cairns gross daily production rose 70% in 2010 to 130,952 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd) from a year ago, mainly from Rajasthan, the desert state in north India.