Reliance prepares Rs13,250cr petchem expansion

Vol 19, PW 20 (16 Jun 16) Midstream & Downstream

Expect EPC tenders worth Rs13,250cr ($2bn) within the next three months from Reliance as it prepares to carry out a major expansion of its petrochemicals facility at the Dahej Manufacturing Division (DMD) in Gujarat.

Reliance sources tell us the company wants to "fast-track" the project following a decision by the environment ministry to approve Reliance's project Terms of Reference on May 11, following submission on March 15. In a March 2016 pre-feasibility report Reliance details how it wants to set up several new facilities and de-bottleneck existing facilities at its Gandhar petrochemicals plant, originally set up by state-owned IPCL but today a wholly-owned Reliance company since 2007.

Among facilities earmarked for de-bottlenecking is the gas cracker where Reliance expects ethylene production to rise sharply from 500,000 to 700,000 t/y after receiving 1.5m t/y shale gas-derived ethane from the US as feedstock. From the gas cracker, ethylene and propylene will be taken as feedstock for the Ethylene Oxide/Ethylene Glycol, Vinyl Chloride Monomer and High Density Polyethylene units.

New planned facilities are for Chlorinated Poly Vinyl Chloride (70,000 t/y), Vinyl Chloride Monomer (1.2m t/y), Poly Vinyl Chloride (1.2m t/y) and ethane storage (90,000 tonnes). "Once environmental clearance comes," says a Reliance source, "the tenders will be issued fast." Reliance hopes to begin work later this year and expects the project to be completed within 29 months or by 2019.