London: Eyeing the burgeoning Indian LPG market, a Norwegian company is planning to set up a joint venture plant in India to supply lightweight, transparent and safe cylinders.
Ragasco which started its highly automated advanced technology for LPG cylinders at its plant in Raufoss, 100 km from Norwegian capital Oslo in 2000, has already secured product approval from the Chief Controller of Explosives in India.
Oyvind Hamre, managing director of Ragasco, along with Hans Henrik Larsen, sales director, met the Indian Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Murli Deora here this week and explained the salient features of the new cylinders. The minister has invited them to visit India and explore possibilities of joint venture to set up a cylinder manufacturing plant.
“Our factory in Norway has been visited by representatives of Indian Oil Corporation, Hindustan Petroleum and Bharat Petroleum,” Hamre said.
“We are seeking cooperation in terms of launching a pilot project. If we can establish the market in India, we will explore opportunities to have a manufacturing unit in India,” he added.
Describing them as “LPG Cylinders for the 21st century” with superb lightweight cylinders, Hamre, who plans to visit India next week told PTI: “The Ragasco cylinders weigh 50% less than the normal steel cylinders, are safe, non-corrosive and transparent.”
He said, “The consumers are attracted to the cylinder because it is lightweight, stylish design and the ability to see the level of liquified gas inside.”
Hamre said during the last seven years, the company has managed to put into market 30 lakh cylinders in European countries including France, Portugal and the UK and received product approvals in the USA, Canada, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Indonesia and Australia.
According to Hamre, India has over 150 million cylinders and on an average 7 million cylinders are put into the market every year.
“India is a very important market and we are looking for a joint venture partner,” he said.
The company which manufactures cylinders ranging from 5 kg to 14 kg weight, has been awarded with Horners Bottle-making Award in 2007.