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IOC Naphtha for Haldia Petro  

IOC Naphtha for Haldia Petro

Haldia Petrochemicals Ltd may source naphtha from IndianOil's Paradip refinery, which is expected to commence production in another two years.

"Haldia Petrochemicals (HPL) has expressed interest in sourcing naphtha from the Paradip refinery. We will hold further discussions and carry out the feasibility study," K.K. Jha, director (pipelines) of IOC, told The Telegraph.

The proposal is at an initial stage, he said, adding that IndianOil would have to lay a dedicated 330km pipeline from the refinery to the petrochemical complex in Haldia.

Haldia Petro had earlier this year announced the completion of its Rs 1,230-crore capacity expansion project - Supermax. The project enhances the capacity of HPL's naphtha cracker unit by nearly 30 per cent to 6.7 lakh tonnes from 5.2 lakh tonnes.

The Bengal government and The Chatterjee group are the major shareholders in HPL.

The Haldia proposal comes at a time IOC is planning to set up a petrochemical complex along with the refinery at Paradip.

Jha said the refinery would produce enough naphtha to meet the in-house needs of the petrochemical complex and demands of HPL. However, he did not disclose the amount of naphtha being sought by HPL.

Faced with a resource crunch, IOC had divided the Paradip refinery and petrochemical project in 2008. In the first phase, it planned to go ahead with the 15-million-tonnes refinery to be commissioned in March 2012.

It had put the petrochemical project on hold because of volatility in global crude oil prices, economic downturn and mounting revenue losses for selling petroleum products below costs.

However, in the last board meeting, IOC revived its plans for the petrochemical project.

"We had kept the petrochemical project on hold. Now with the company's finances showing better prospects, we have to take a decision on when to start the project again," IOC chairman B.M. Bansal said.

The petrochemical project will cost Rs 22,300 crore.

According to IOC director (refineries) B.N. Bankapur, "The timeline for the petrochemical project will be worked out soon. We had planned a one-million-tonne petrochemical plant. There will not be any change in the configuration of the plant."

IOC has so far invested Rs 6,000 crore in this refinery-cum-petrochemical project.
Telegraph, Kolkata, June 14, 2010

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