The country's largest natural gas distributor GAIL (India) Ltd has entered into a memorandum of understanding with Paradip Port Trust (PPT) for setting up of an offshore LNG (liquefied natural gas) terminal at the port at a cost of Rs 3,108 crore.
The project- Floating Storage Regasification Unit will have an intial capacity of four million tonne per annum (mtpa), reaching a peak capacity of 4.8 mtpa, with a storage capacity of 170,000 cubic metres. The first phase of the project is expected to go on stream by 2017. While PPT would invest Rs 650 crore on breakwater and dredging, GAIL would invest the residual Rs 2,458 crore. In the second phase, an additional four mtpa capacity will be added (peak capacity- 4.8 mtpa), raising the terminal's overall capacity to 8-10 mtpa.
"The completion of this project will position Odisha on the global LNG map, heralding a new area in industrial development and employment generation and economic upliftment of the nation as a whole. The PSUs and private organizations need to come forward to develop LNG infrastructure in major ports. Considering the economic, social and environment impact, the activities of the ports on the society and the environment, it was felt that the ports should become vehicles that serve the interests of the society by taking responsibility for the impact of their activities,” said G K Vasan, Union minister for shipping at the signing of the MoU.
Speaking on PPT's performance, the minister said, “The traffic handled by the port up to the month of September during this financial year is the second highest in terms of cargo handled and also in terms of percentage growth of cargo amongst all major ports. The port has handled 34.12 million tonne of cargo during the first six months of the financial year compared to 25.63 million tonne during the last financial year, with a growth of 33.13 per cent.”
The MoU was signed between Sudhansu Sekhara Mishra, PPT chairman and Sanjib Datta, executive director (business development), GAIL (India) Ltd.
"An LNG terminal would come up at the Paradip port. This will position both Paradip and Odisha on the global map of LNG business. The LNG terminal will cater to the requirement of eastern, western and central parts of the country”, said the PPT chairman.
Talking on the proposed LNG terminal, Datta said, “Our re-gasification unit will have a dedicated LNG jetty. The natural gas will be transported through GAIL's Jagdishpur-Haldia and Surat-Paradip pipelines. India is currently the fourth largest consumer of gas and the share of natural gas in the country's primary energy market is poised to reach 22 per cent by 2020 and 25 per cent by 2035.”