A public hearing will be conducted on November 9 at Gangavaram port on the Rs 4,500-crore LNG terminal being set up by Petronet LNG Ltd at the Gangavaram port.

The terminal will have a capacity of 10 million metric tonnes per annum (initially 5 mmtpa) and presently pre-project works are going on. The draft environment impact assessment (EIA) report has been submitted to the Andhra Pradesh Pollution Control Board.

The front-end engineering design document is being prepared by Engineers India Ltd and it may be ready by November.

The topography survey, soil analysis and other preliminary surveys will be completed in a few months and the contract may be awarded sometime during January or February. “It will take three years to construct the terminal and commission it, but we are also looking at another option which enables us to import LNG by 2014 or so. We are considering chartering a floating LNG storage and regasification unit and the company has already received expression of interest from bidders. We are weighing the options,” said Managing Director A.K. Balyan.

He said the company would retain more than 70 per cent of the equity with itself. It would offer a small portion (less than 10 per cent) to Gangavaram port and 10 per cent or so to a strategic partner from abroad who can bring in the technological support or who can be of help in sourcing LNG.

“We do not need a foreign strategic partner for finances, but for the other purposes. We are in search of one,” he added.

The company is also establishing a similar terminal at Kochi in a special economic zone.

It is in the advanced stage and may be commissioned by January/February. Its initial capacity will also be 5 mmtpa and the cost similar to that of Gangavaram terminal.

sarma.rs@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on November 1, 2012)
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