Work on NE petrochem project in full swing

Sushanta Talukdar

The first ever petrochemical plant of the northeast region, Brahmaputra Cracker and Polymer Ltd. (BCPL), being set up at Lepekata in upper Assam's Dibrugarh district is set to be commissioned in December, 2013, company Chairman B. C. Tripathi said.

Mr. Tripathi, who is also GAIL Chairman and Managing Director, told journalists that the project activities at Lepetkata, Duliajan, and Lakwa had been progressing in full swing and mechanical completion of the project was expected by July, 2013.

The project cost has been revised to Rs.8,879 crore from Rs.5,641 crore on account of technology, design changes, time escalation, increase in cost due to change in infrastructure site condition and construction cost and the like.

The revised cost has been approved by the Public Investment Board and is now awaiting approval of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs.

Mr. Tripathi said financial commitment had already been made for Rs.7,340 crore while Rs.2,500 crore had been spent so far and the budget for the current year had been fixed at Rs.3,200 crore. A project committed in the Assam Accord (signed between the Centre, the All Assam Students' Union (AASU) and the Assam Government in 1985), the petrochemical plant will have an annual production capacity of 2.80 lakh tonnes of polymer and polymer propylene. BCPL is a joint venture company promoted by GAIL, Oil India Ltd. (OIL), Numaligarh Refinery Ltd. (NRL) and the Assam Government.

Due to revision in the project cost the equity share of GAIL in the project would double to Rs.700 crore, while equity share of other three promoters was also required go up from Rs.100 crore each to Rs.200 crore each. Of the revised cost of Rs.8,879 crore, the capital subsidy is Rs.5,429 crore.

The Chairman said that till date 103 fresh young executives, who had passed out from different institutions of northeast, had been recruited

More than 50 per cent of the produce from the plant would be utilised in downstream industries of the region.