Massive response to the opportunity of investment in the petrochemical sector has unexpectedly inflated the total value of investment intentions received at the Make in Odisha conclave scheduled to conclude on Thursday.
The state received 183 proposals in all, valued at Rs 4.19 trillion in 15 diversified areas at the event, compared to its own expectation of netting Rs 2.5-3 trillion worth of investment plans as expressed by the state industry minister in the pre-event briefings. All these proposals have the potential to create about 0.6 million jobs.
Of these, the petrochemical sector’s share stood at Rs 1.35 trillion spread over 37 proposals.
Topping the list of prospective investors in the field was a Rs 700-billion proposal from Haldia Petrochemicals Ltd (HPL), a joint venture with the Government of West Bengal, The Chatterjee Group, the Tatas and Indian Oil Corporation as major stakeholders. When established, it will be the second oil refinery in the state, after IOCL’s Paradip facility.
HPL has proposed to set up a refinery and downstream complex in the state with an investment of Rs 700 billion having potential to create 31,000 jobs, said state industry secretary Sanjeev Chopra. However, the location of the project has not been decided, he added.
Similarly, Taiwan’s state-owned CPC Corporation intended to invest Rs 430 billion in the petrochemical cracker and downstream facilities near Paradip. A Taiwanese delegation had earlier discussed the plan with Union petroleum minister, Dharmendra Pradhan and state officials in July this year.
Compared to the Make in Odisha conclave, the petrochemical sector this time has got a major boost said industry analyst RP Panda. In the first Make in Odisha summit in 2016, the sector had received Rs 27,023 crore worth of proposals.
Despite the buoyancy of interest shown by the investors in the sector, the mining and mineral processing field, which has long been the backbone of state’s industrial landscape and where the state has a natural advantage with its vast reserve of resources, cornered the lion’s share of investment intentions both in number of proposals and in value term.
Mining and Mineral processing sector got 56 per cent of the whole investment promises, valued at Rs 2.36 trillion across 53 proposals and assuring the creation of 0.18 million jobs.
Leading the pack of investors in this field is the proposal of Jindal Steel and Power (JSPL) to expand the capacity of its steel plant at Angul from 6 million tonnes to 20 million tonnes at an expense of Rs 600 billion. The investment on the expansion is spread over the next 12 years and the work on it is expected to start from 2020 after the company achieves full capacity of the present operation.
Next to JSPL is the plan of Mahanadi Coalfields to invest Rs 580 billion on coal mining and infrastructure development and that of Steel Authority of India to expand the capacity of its Rourkela Steel Plant (RSP) from 4.5 million tonnes to 10 million tonnes at a cost of Rs Rs 410 billion.
The other notable investment proposals received in the sector included Tata Steel’s move to expand the capacity of its Kalinganagar plant from 3 million tonne to 8 million tonne with an additional investment of RS 235 billion and Vedanta’s plan to expand the alumina refining capacity at Lanjigarh plant from 1 million to 6 million tonne at an expense of Rs 150 billion.