Indian Oil expands JV with Malaysia's Petronas to focus on LNG plants

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NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Indian Oil Corp is expanding its joint venture with Malaysia's state-run Petronas to include building liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals, fuel retailing and gas distribution, Chairman S.M. Vaidya said on Friday.

IOC, the country's top fuel retailer, imports some liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) through IndianOil Petronas Pvt Ltd, its equal joint venture with the Malaysian firm.

The state-run firm is keen to tie up with global firms, as it attempts to strengthen its grip in new cleaner energy areas such as hydrogen.

"We are pursuing more such win-win associations with respective segment leaders to explore newer avenues of growth and gain competitive advantage in the future," Vaidya said at the annual shareholders meet.

IOC is investing 1 trillion Indian rupees ($13.49 billion) to raise its refining capacity by 25 million tonnes a year in next 2-5 year, Vaidya said, adding his company aims to maximise yields of chemical products.

($1 = 74.1370 Indian rupees)

(Reporting by Nidhi Verma; Editing by Kim Coghill)

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