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India Draws Up $8.7 Billion Plan To Turn Urea Exporter

India aims to become a urea exporter by 2021 as the South Asian nation has drawn up a Rs 55,500 crore plan to revive mothballed fertiliser plants and set up gas import and pipeline facilities in eastern India

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India aims to become a urea exporter by 2021 as the South Asian nation has drawn up a Rs 55,500 crore ($8.7 billion) plan to revive mothballed fertiliser plants and set up gas import and pipeline facilities in eastern India.

The fertiliser plants would raise annual urea production capacity by 7.5 million tonne (MT), fertiliser minister Ananth Kumar told a news conference on Thursday (27 April).

India produced 24.2 MT of urea in 2016-17. The country’s farm sector accounts for about 15 per cent of its $2 trillion economy and employ three-fifths of its 1.3 billion people.

The country imported about 5.4 MT of its fertiliser needs from countries including Iran, China and Iran during the last fiscal year ending in March.

“From an importing country, we will become an exporting country,” said Kumar. “For food security, we need fertiliser security.”

The expansion includes building a 2,650-km pipeline, the revival of four urea plants in states of northern Uttar Pradesh, eastern Jharkhand, Bihar and Odisha, and building a liquefied gas import facility all at a cost of about Rs 50,000 crore, oil minister Dharmendra Pradhan said during the news conference.

A separate fertiliser project at Ramagundam in southern Indian would cost Rs 5,500 crore, he added.

The fertiliser projects will get natural gas as a feedstock from Adani Group’s 5 MT a year liquefied natural gas (LNG) import facility at Dhamra in Odisha.

“We have derisked the project... all the expansion will be on imported LNG,” Pradhan said, adding the projects will be in operation by between 2020 and 2021.

(Reuters)


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