With a focus on economic development and employment generation, the UPA government is gearing up to announce a Rs 37,230 crore refinery-cum-petrochemicals project in Rajasthan.
In a letter to UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, a copy of which is available with HT, petroleum minister M Veerappa Moily has requested Gandhi to announce the project sometime in August. “The 4,000 acres of land needed for the project in Pachpadra (Barmer District) in Rajasthan has been identified and is being acquired by the government of Rajasthan,” Moily said in the letter.
Rajasthan, incidentally, is ruled by the Congress.
The capacity of the project will be 9 million tonnes per annum and will be implemented as a joint venture between state-owned Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) and the Ashok Gehlot-led government of Rajasthan. Moily said the equity stake of HPCL in the project will be 74% and the rest with the state government.
"The proposed Rajasthan refinery-cum-petrochemicals project is scheduled to be completed by December 2017," Moily mentioned in the letter. Project approvals, land/environmental clearances and financial closure of the project are expected by the end of 2013.
The crude oil produced in Rajasthan is highly waxy in nature. Moily said the new project will utilise this crude (from Cairn India and ONGC) to the maximum extent possible with innovative technologies.
Government sources said the proposed petrochemical complex will be the first such complex specifically designed to produce petrochemicals from the waxy indigenous crude oil.
HPCL will have the entire marketing rights for all the products (including petrochemical products) to be produced by the refinery. Going forward, ONGC and Engineers India Ltd are likely to pick up some stake in the project.