IOC-Petronas JV wants gas regulator to put HPCL’s pipeline plan on hold

IndianOil Petronas (IPPL), a joint venture of state-run Indian Oil Corporation and Malaysia-based Petronas, has asked the national gas regulator to stop Hindustan Petroleum Corporation (HPCL) from laying the planned pipeline from the Haldia port to Panagarh, West Bengal.

HPCL is planning to build a 215-km pipeline to transport liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) from the port to its bottling plant in Panagarh. Currently, HPCL’s LPG demand for West Bengal, Bihar and Jharkhand markets are met through imports in the Haldia terminal, and the fuel is now transported to the bottling plant by road.

In its response to the regulator’s notice seeking stakeholders’ comments on the proposal for the pipeline, IPPL pointed out to the Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board (PNGRB) that using the existing 265-km railway line between the two places will be the “least cost mode of transportation of bulk LPG”.

IPPL, the IOCL JV for terminalling services business, has finalised plans for setting up necessary infrastructure for loading bulk LPG at the Haldia port through railways.

“We would be ready to discuss the matter with HPCL to meet their bulk LPG transportation requirement to Panagarh by rail accordingly,” the company said.

At current volumes, the proposed line is expected to replace 391 million tonne-km of road transportation per annum. HPCL currently operates 3,775 km of hydrocarbon pipelines across the country.

Financial express
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