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Work on Vizag-Hyderabad GAIL pipeline to begin soon

Amit Mitra

VISAKHAPATNAM, April 12

WORK on the 600-km long Visakhapatnam-Hyderabad LPG pipeline being laid by Gas Authority of India Ltd (GAIL) is likely to commence from next month. Three shipments of special steel pipes have already arrived here from Korea.

Authoritative sources told Business Line that the three shipments involved steel pipes up to a length of 350 km. Two more shipments of pipes, which are being supplied by SK Global of South Korea, are expected to arrive in the next few weeks.

According to sources, bids received for laying the pipeline and associated facilities were likely to be finalised early next month. About 16 bids have been received by Engineers India Ltd (EIL), which is evaluating the bids on behalf of GAIL.

GAIL has divided the entire stretch of pipeline into five spreads, with the scope of work being laying the pipeline and optic fibre cable, including mechanical, civil, structural, electrical and instrumentation works for associated facilities.

The project, which is estimated to cost Rs 500 crore, is scheduled to be wrapped up by September 2003.

The pipeline, which will run alongside HPCL's Visakhapatnam-Hyderabad petroleum products pipeline, is expected to significantly smoothen LPG distribution in the State. This will be GAIL's second cross-country LPG pipeline, after the 1,250-km long Jamnagar-Loni pipeline, the longest LPG pipeline in the world.

The pipeline will have a capacity to transport 1.164 million tonnes of LPG annually and be delivering LPG equivalent to 2.5 lakh cylinders per day to HPCL and other oil marketing companies at Vijayawada and Hyderabad.

The demand for LPG in Andhra Pradesh is estimated at 2.8 lakh tonnes, with HPCL having the largest market share of 46.4 per cent (1.30 lakh tonnes), followed by IOC with 36.2 per cent (1.01 lakh tonnes) and BPCL with 17.4 per cent (48,709 tonnes).

HPCL also has the largest number of dealers in the State (252), followed by IOC (246) and BPCL (149).

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