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Gas task force to offer necessary infrastructure for Kochi LNG terminal

Our Bureau

Kochi , Oct. 8

THE gas task force (GTF) formed with the officials ofBharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd and Kochi Refineries Ltd for marketing natural gas in and around Kerala will provide necessary infrastructure beforethe commissioning of the LNG terminal in late 2009. to be set up by Petronet LNG Ltd here.

Addressing a press conference here, Mr M.J. Mohan, General Manager, BPCL, who is heading the GTF, said the role of the task force was mainly to supply natural gas to industrial customers in and around Kerala; setting up of auto CNG stations; supply of domestic piped gas to cities like Kochi and setting up of C2/C3 extraction facility.

According to Mr Mohan, the demand for LNG from the terminal could be estimated at around 7.5 million tonnes per annum and there is a potential to raise it further. GAIL (India) Ltd would

transport the gas, while BPCL and KRL would jointly do the marketing, he said.

The major industrial customers who would be using natural gas are NTPC, Kayamkulam; Fertilisers and Chemicals Travancore Ltd ; Hindustan Organic Chemicals , Ambalamugal; BSES, Kochi; Apollo Tyres Ltd; Excel Glasses, Alapuzha; Malabar Cements, Walayar; Nallalam Power Plant, Kozhikode; DCP, Kasargode; Kottakkal Arya Vaidya Sala, Kottakkal; and Western India Plywoods, Valapattanam. He said various studies pertaining to the marketing of natural gas including preparation of detailed feasibility report were under way.

A joint venture with GAIL (India) is possible for setting up auto CNG stations and supply of domestic piped gas in Kochi and other cities. In this proposed joint venture, the Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation would also be an equity partner.

The advantages of the terminal included power generation at reduced cost, availability of economical feedstock for fertilisers/petrochemicals, economical source of fuel for commercial/industrial applications, cheaper and safer fuel for domestic use and economical fuel for transport, he said.

The next meeting to review the progress on the LNG terminal project would be convened here on October 15 by the Chief Minister, Mr Oommen Chandy, he said, adding that the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, is expected to lay the foundation stone for the terminal here on November 1.

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