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India's Reliance announces US$30b investment drive

India's largest private company, Reliance Industries, said on Wednesday it will invest $30 billion over three years to finish projects across its sprawling businesses.

MUMBAI: India's largest private company, Reliance Industries, said on Wednesday it will invest $30 billion over three years to finish projects across its sprawling businesses.

Chairman Mukesh Ambani, India's richest man, also said the energy giant would start offering high-speed 4G telecommunications services next year as it diversifies into new areas to build revenues.

"The next two years... will see us focused on executing and progressively bringing these projects on-stream in petrochemicals, refining, retail and Jio," Ambani said at the company's annual general meeting in Mumbai.

"2016-17 will be the first full year in which the complete benefits of all these investments will be available to our shareholders, consumers and the society," he said.

Reliance Jio, the conglomerate's telecoms arm, hopes to launch 4G mobile and broadband services in 2015 in India, one of the world's biggest markets for mobile services adding millions of new consumers each year.

Ambani told shareholders that Reliance was investing around $12 billion in the telecoms business and the firm should see returns soon.

The owner of the world's largest oil refining complex, Reliance receives most of its revenues from its energy empire but in recent years it has ventured into new businesses.

Its retail arm has also grown to become the country's largest supermarket chain.

Ambani also announced the appointment of his wife, Nita, to the firm's board, after a new law stipulated that listed companies must have a female director. Several top firms have also opted for family members.

Reliance shares on the Bombay Stock Exchange reacted little to the announcements and were down 1.48 percent at 1,073.80 rupees.

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