Lotte Group mulls entry into refining sector

13-May-09
In a bid to accelerate a synergetic effect with its petrochemical affiliates, Korea's eighth-largest conglomerate- Lotte Group is planning its foray into the oil refining business by taking over Hyundai Oilbank. The takeover will reduce the dependence of Lotte on local refiner S-OIL and other foreign-based companies for its feedstock requirements. Currently, the company's ownership is before an international arbitrary court in a feud between its two largest shareholders Hyundai Heavy Industries and International Petroleum Investment Co. (IPIC) of the United Arab Emirates. If Hyundai Heavy wins, it will have a priority to buy the IPIC stake in Hyundai Oilbank. But if the judge rules in favor of IPIC, the sale will be open later this year to a third party – that seems to be Lotte in all possibility.
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