Petronet LNG takes over land from CPT

PETRONET LNG Ltd took possession of the allotted 32 hectares of land from the Cochin Port Trust on Monday for setting up its second LNG terminal in Kochi.

Petronet LNG, a joint venture company formed by the Union Government to set up the LNG terminal in the country, is in the process of setting up its second LNG terminal at Puthuvypeen off Kochi with an initial capacity of 2.5 mmtpa (million tonnes per annum) with a provision of expansion to 5 mmtpa at an estimated cost of Rs 2,100 crore.

The port Chairman, Mr N. Ramachandran, and the Petronet LNG Managing Director and CEO, Mr P. Dasgupta, exchanged documents in this regard at the port's conference hall.

Mr Dasgupta told reporters that Petronet LNG has completed all pre-project activities including land survey, soil investigation, sea bed engineering, marine and terrestrial risk analysis and detailed feasibility report.

All licenses are also obtained and the NOC from the Environment Ministry is in the advanced stage of processing and would be obtained shortly, he said. After possession of the land, Petronet LNG and the port will enter into a detailed license agreement in the next three months, he added.

According to Mr Dasgupta, the EPC contract for the terminal will be awarded by the third quarter of this year; the terminal is expected to be commissioned by the last quarter of 2009.

The storage capacity is selected so as to handle 5 mmtpa in future without any modification, to save time and cost.

Asked whether the company has identified any gas supplier for the project, he said discussions were in the final stage with various firms in the Far East, South East Asia and Australia to finalise the gas supply agreement.

"We are fully committed with the project and Kochi will receive the best," he said. Mr Dasgupta said the company had already floated a global tender for pre-qualification of ship owners and operators of LNG transportation for the Kochi terminal.

The port Chairman said the dredging activities planned by the port for its various developmental projects are progressing fast and the port had already attained a 12.5-metre draught for the smooth movement of vessels.

The next stage will attain a 14.5-metre draught for the Vallarpadam container terminal and the LNG project which will be ready by 2009, he said.

Source: Business Line, Kochi, February 7, 2006
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