17-04-2017

Green signal for IOC’s Kochi LPG terminal

KT

In a major boost to the stalled prime infrastructure project of IndianOil in Kerala, the National Green Tribunal (NGT) has confirmed its order dated August 2, 2016, permitting IndianOil to “go ahead” with its LPG import terminal project at Puthuvypeen near here.

The project work has been stalled since February 15 due to protests, alleging that IndianOil is violating NGT order.

Green signal

PS Mony, General Manager and State Head, Kerala, said, “The NGT passed an order confirming that there is no bar on proceeding with the work according to the August 2 order and hence no obstruction should be caused to the project work. In case of any obstruction, IndianOil is entitled to take appropriate action in accordance with law.” IOCL is constructing a LPG Import Terminal of six lakh tonne capacity a year at Kochi in Puthuvypeen SEZ of Cochin Port Trust.

The project also includes laying of a pipeline from the Jetty to Kochi refinery via IOCL’s LPG Plant at Kochi.

This pipeline would be hooked to the Kochi-Salem Pipeline, which is also under construction. The entire project consists of an LPG Terminal also. It is constructed by BPCL at Palakkad and is expected to cost around Rs. 2,200 crore. The pipeline is being constructed jointly by IOCL and BPCL.

Growing demand

The LPG Import Terminal is very important since the indigenous availability of LPG in the country is only half of the demand.

The LPG customer base in the country is presently 15 crore, which is expected to double by 2020. LPG demand in the country is presently growing by 11 per cent. The LPG consumption of Kerala also is expected to rise significantly by 2019. LPG imports are expected to rise significantly by 2020 from the current levels of 50 per cent and IOCL is augmenting the LPG infrastructure across the country including setting up of 23 new bottling plants, the Mundra-Gorakhpur LPG Pipeline besides the Import Terminal at Kochi and the Kochi-Salem Pipeline (with BPCL). The LPG Import Terminal at Kochi has been targeted to be completed by February 2018, the officials said. IOCL has been facing challenges in executing the project. The NGT has given clearance for IOCL to go ahead with the project pending a final order on a complaint raised by some.

According to officials, any delay in implementing the project would result in huge cost overrun besides creating shortage of LPG in the market. It is pertinent to note that the Petronet LNG Terminal and Oil Terminal of BPC are working smoothly in the neighbourhood.

Source: The Hindu Business Line 

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