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Indian Oil looks to draw Oxygen from China plant

FILE PHOTO: India’s state-run oil and gas firms are sourcing 900 metric tonnes of liquid medical oxygen from countries such as Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Thailand free of cost (REUTERS)Premium
FILE PHOTO: India’s state-run oil and gas firms are sourcing 900 metric tonnes of liquid medical oxygen from countries such as Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Thailand free of cost (REUTERS)

State-run Indian Oil Corporation Ltd is planning to draw liquid medical oxygen from the Chinese plant of industrial gas maker Linde on a commercial basis, said two people aware of the development

State-run Indian Oil Corporation Ltd is planning to draw liquid medical oxygen from the Chinese plant of industrial gas maker Linde on a commercial basis, said two people aware of the development.

This comes against the backdrop of Indian government being cool to Chinese offers of assistance in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic. Indian firms on their part have been sourcing raw materials and products from China.

India’s state-run oil and gas firms are sourcing 900 metric tonnes of liquid medical oxygen from countries such as Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Thailand free of cost and an additional 12,840MT on a commercial basis.

An external spokesperson for Linde India in an emailed response said, “the brand would refrain from commenting on this matter."

Queries emailed to an Indian Oil Corporation spokesperson on Tuesday evening remained unanswered.

“The state-run firms are on the job to meet the challenges thrown up by this pandemic," said one of the two people cited above requesting anonymity.

British multinational Linde Plc’s subsidiaries Linde India Ltd and Praxair India Pvt. Ltd together have a capacity of around 2,400MT daily from 30 production facilities and filling stations across India. It is also part of the Empowered Group 2 (EG2) set up by the government on managing liquid medical oxygen production, allocation and supply.

India’s domestic liquid medical oxygen production has been ramped up to around 9,400MT per day. State-run oil firms are also setting up Pressure Swing Adsorption (PSA) oxygen generation plants at 100 locations to help meet the acute oxygen shortage.

According to petroleum and natural gas ministry, state-run oil and gas firms are working to find solutions for transporting liquid oxygen in addition to their refineries diverting 965MT of liquid medical oxygen daily.

While 12 tankers and 20 ISO containers with a 650 MT capacity have been pressed into service, the number is expected to go up to 26 tankers and 117 ISO containers having a 2,314 MT capacity by May-end.

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