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Shell's Stanlow oil refinery to stay open

LONDON, Aug. 20 (UPI) -- The Stanlow oil refinery in Cheshire, England, will not shut down despite tenders offered by Indian industrial conglomerate Essar, Royal Dutch Shell said.

Essar offered to buy the Stanlow refinery as part of a push by the Indian company to establish a footprint in European markets.

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Stanlow is part of a $1.95 billion offer from Essar to acquire three fuel-manufacturing plants in Europe. The two other plants are located in Germany.

Shell is refocusing its investment strategies to Asian markets while Middle Eastern and Asian companies move into the European market.

Essar said it has set up a mergers and acquisitions team in London to examine the pitch to make it more attractive to regional parties.

A statement from the British supermajor said it had "advised" its employees in Cheshire of the pending deal as it weighed its long-term ownership options, the Manchester Evening News daily newspaper reports.

Shell added, however, that the refinery, its remaining facility in Britain, would remain open.

"There are no plans to close the refinery or associated local marketing businesses," a Shell statement read.

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