India’s ever-expanding energy demand has prompted UK energy giant BP to form a fuels partnership with Reliance in a bid to secure a foothold.

The joint venture will see both companies build on the latter’s existing retail service station network and aviation fuels business across the fastest-growing fuels market in the world.

It will be be 51% owned by Reliance and 49% owned by BP, with the deal predicted to formally close sometime in the first half of 2020.

BP’s group executive Bob Dudley said: “India is set to be the world’s largest growth market for energy by the mid-2020s.

BP is already a large investor here and we see further attractive, strategic opportunities to support this growth.

“We are working closely with Reliance to develop India’s gas resources, helping meet the country’s demand for that key fuel.

“Together we will work to provide consumers across India the high-quality fuels, convenience retail and services they need, continuing to drive modernisation and mobility solutions across the country.”

bp reliance fuels partnership
How the partnership will benefit BP and Reliance (Credit: BP/Reliance)


BP and Reliance fuels partnership to capitalise on world’s fastest-growing fuels market

Over the next 20 years, India is anticipated to remain the world’s fastest-growing fuels market, with a 600% growth rate predicted for the number of passenger cars in the country over the two decades.

Reliance’s existing fuel retailing network comprises more than 1,400 sites throughout India — the joint venture aims to increase this to 5,500 by 2024.

The two companies’ work together dates back to 2011, and reached its peak in 2017 when both firms agreed to formally cooperate on developing alternative fuels and mobility businesses.

Reliance chairman and managing director Mukesh Ambani said: “We are delighted to expand our partnership with BP, one of the global leaders in the fuel-retailing sector.

“This partnership is a testimony to the strong ties between BP and Reliance. Our robust partnership in developing gas resources in India has now expanded to fuel retailing and aviation fuels.

“This transformative partnership will deepen our engagement with the consumers in further enhancing the world-class services across the country.”