Govt close to hiring developers for new fertilizer plants in four states
New Delhi: The government is close to hiring project developers to build new fertilizer production units at Gorakhpur in Uttar Pradesh, Sindri in Jharkhand, Barauni in Bihar and Talcher in Odisha, a person aware of the matter said on condition of anonymity.
Construction work will be assigned on a turnkey basis and the projects are expected to get completed in 36 months, the person cited above said.
The plants at Sindri, Gorakhpur and Barauni of 1.2 million tonnes each will operate under Hindustan Urvarak & Rasayan Ltd (HURL), a joint venture of Coal India Ltd, NTPC Ltd, Indian Oil Corp. Ltd, Fertilizer Corp. of India Ltd (FCIL) and Hindustan Fertilizer Corp. Ltd (HFCL).
A fourth plant of similar capacity being built at Talcher by a consortium of Engineers India Ltd (EIL) and National Fertilizers Ltd and FCIL will use coal-gasification technology. All the projects have been given required pre-approval clearances including on environment impact and are expected to be completed by 2021.
Work on a fifth new plant of 1.2 million tonnes at Ramagundam in Andhra Pradesh, is already on and it is expected to be completed by December 2018, said the person quoted above.
“Talcher plant will be the first fertilizer plant in India using coal-gasification technology. There are 52 such projects running in the world. Once this project is commissioned, it will be a model for using gas produced from coal, which could be adopted by refineries and power plants to lower their emissions,” said the official cited above. A construction contractor for the Talcher plant will also be hired shortly.
Reviving sick fertilizer units has been a policy priority as it reduces import of the most commonly used fertilizer urea, saves jobs and deepens the market for natural gas, a feedstock. Gas-based fertilizer units will also add to the customer base of gas trading and energy infrastructure firms like Gail India Ltd.
The government also wants to step up urea production. The five new units along with private sector capacity coming up are likely to boost urea production capacity from 25 million tonne at present to 34 million tonne by 2021-22, according to government estimates.