Hope for Bhatinda refinery

Vol 4, PW 14 (16 Aug 00) News in Brief

Oil minister Ram Naik has re-affirmed his commitment to plans by Hindustan Petroleum to construct a 9m tonnes a year (t/y) Greenfield refinery at Bhatinda in Punjab.

On 8th August Naik told Indian MPs the government has agreed to let Hindustan Petroleum spend Rs300cr ($70m) in initial construction work, in a decision taken on 1st April. He said all statutory clearances have been obtained and that the estimated project cost is Rs9,806cr ($2.3bn).

Naik added that the refinery would be built as a 'Joint Venture', but carefully avoided mention of any joint venture partner. Saudi Aramco, and later Exxon, were once linked to the project but later lost interest.