The state-owned Numaligarh Refinery Limited (NRL) in Assam has undertaken an ambitious Rs 9.49 billion plan to augment its capacity and lay 2,200 km of crude oil pipeline from the Paradip port in Odisha to Numaligarh, and product pipeline from Numaligarh to Siliguri in West Bengal, said officials.
A senior NRL official said that the company would invest Rs 9.49 billion in the current financial year for its capital projects, including refinery expansion project from the current 3 MMTPA to 9 MMTPA besides laying the 2,200 km crude oil pipeline.
The NRL is also laying the 130 km transnational India-Bangladesh Friendship Pipeline (IBFPL) from its marketing terminal in Siliguri to Parbatipur in Bangladesh.
The official said that the NRL holds equity stake in two important ongoing joint venture projects including M/s Assam Bio Refinery Pvt. Ltd. (ABRPL) which is implementing the first bamboo-mass bio-refinery in the country and M/s Indradhanush Gas Grid Limited (IGGL) which is implementing North East Gas Grid connecting all the eight capitals of northeastern states with National Gas Grid.
The pipeline would also cater to the industrial customers in the northeastern states including NRL. An official release said that Department of Public Enterprises (under the Ministry of Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises) Secretary Sailesh visited NRL's corporate office in Guwahati and reviewed the capital expenditure (CAPEX) plan of Oil India Limited and NRL for the financial year 2020-21.
"The DPE Secretary took stock of the CAPEX plans of both the companies in the current fiscal and beyond and stressed upon the need to speed up the same as envisioned by the central government in order to boost the economy and sustain the momentum of its revival in the aftermath of Covid-19," the release said.
Meanwhile, the NRL entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with Oil India Limited to augment OIL's existing pumping capacity through the Numaligarh-Siliguri Pipeline (NSPL).
This will increase product evacuation from 1.72 to 5.50 MMTPA, and will be commissioned by July 2024 in sync with NRL's refinery expansion from 3 to 9 MMTPA.
The MoU was signed by M.K. Pegu, Head (Project Pipeline) of NRL, and Sandip Goswami, Chief General Manager, OIL, in the presence of DPE Secretary Sailesh and OIL Chairman-cum-Managing Director S.C. Mishra, among others.
The MoU will help NRL in product evacuation after refinery expansion, and OIL will replace NRL as project proponent for monitoring of the product pipeline project under National Infrastructure Projects (NIP).
The NRL, one of the four refineries in oil and gas rich Assam, was set up at Numaligarh in Golaghat district of Assam in accordance with the provisions made in the Assam Accord signed on August 15, 1985, has been conceived as a vehicle for speedy industrial and economic development of the region. The NRL was dedicated to the nation by former Prime Minister late Atal Bihari Vajpayee on July 9, 1999.