Assam Gas Cracker Cost escalates to over Rs 9000 cr

NEW DELHI, Jan 25 – The schedule for completion of the mega Assam gas cracker project has been revised while the project cost has escalated to over Rs 9000 crore from Rs 5460 crore.

Union Minister for Development of the North Eastern Region (DoNER), Bijoy Krishna Handique confirmed this.

Talking to newsmen, Handique revealed that he has received a communication from Principal Secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), T K A Nair informing him that the targeted date of completion has been rescheduled for 2013. Nair has been given charge to monitor the implementation of the gas cracker project.

The project cost too has increased to over Rs 9000 crore, Handique added.

As reported, the gas cracker project has slippages and missed its target for the last two consecutive years.

Last year, the project could achieve only 26.4 per cent of the targeted 50 per cent. As on November last year, 26.4 per cent work was achieved, as against the cumulative scheduled target of 50 per cent.

Recently, PMO had sought a detailed status report from the Department of Chemical and Petrochemicals (DCPC) and the Bramaputra Crackers and Polymers Limited (BCPL) to file a latest report with reason for the delay.

Meanwhile, Minister DoNER Handique on Monday chaired a meeting of the officials of the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) to resolve a couple of outstanding issues.

MSME is involved in providing skill training to workers and entrepreneurs for gas cracker project. The officials of DoNER and MSME would meet to work out an action plan, said the Minister.

Handique said the gas cracker project needs 6000-8000 skilled workers daily. “We shall be deciding on the training soon,” he added.

Meanwhile, the Minister DoNER disclosed that the Sixth North East Business Summit in Mumbai held on January 21-22 saw signing of 45 Expression of Interest (EoIs) between investors and State Governments of the Region covering agro-food processing, infrastructure, manufacturing and services sectors.

“The total investment in to these sectors could be around Rs 1060 crore,” he said.

Nagaland’s N Rio was the lone Chief Minister to attend the Meet, other States were represented by State Ministers and senior officials. Assam was represented by State Industry Minister, Pradyut Bordoloi.