US pension fund to vote against Saudi Aramco chairman Al-Rumayyan's appointment to RIL board: Report
The California State Teachers' Retirement Fund (CalSTRS) has decided to vote against the appointment of Saudi Aramco's chairman Yasir Al-Rumayyan as an independent director to the board of Mukesh Ambani's Reliance Industries, according to a media report.
CalSTRS' voting decision is based on U.S. proxy advisory research firm Glass Lewis' recommendation, BloombergQuint reported on Friday.
The U.S. pension fund held 5.3 million fully and partly paid shares of Reliance Industries, as of June 30, 2020, according to the last available disclosure on its website.
Glass Lewis helps over 1200 investors across the world by making voting recommendations. It had recommended voting against Al-Rumayyan "based on the director's status as an independent director" of RIL, the report added.
Yasir Al-Rumayyan's appointment comes as part of RIL's fulfillment of the $15 billion oil deal with Aramco that involves the sale of a 20 per cent stake in its oil-to-chemicals business, comprising oil refineries at Jamnagar in Gujarat and petrochemical assets, to Aramco, the world's largest oil exporter.
The stake sale had been agreed upon in 2019, but no action on the deal was taken as oil demand and prices crashed due to the pandemic last year.
Bloomberg News reported Chief Executive Officer Amin Nasser had said at Aramco's earnings briefing in August that the company was still doing due diligence on the Reliance deal.
Yasir Al Rumayyan (51), Saudi Aramco chairman and Governor of the Kingdom's wealth fund, Public Investment Fund, was inducted as an independent director in Reliance Industries, will replace Yogendra P Trivedi, 92, who had expressed a desire to retire.
The shareholders' voting process to confirm Al-Rumayyan's appointment as an independent director, for a period of three years, will end on Oct. 19, said the Bloomberg report.