NEW PROJECT – Two pipelines from BPCL

Vol 16, PW 12 (10 Jan 13) Midstream & Downstream

In India few things are as daunting as securing RoU permission to lay a pipeline.

But state-owned refiner Bharat Petroleum has come up with a novel solution for a proposed 12-inch diameter, 221-km LPG pipeline from its Kochi refinery in Kerala to its bottling plants at Coimbatore in Tamil Nadu. BPCL tells us it will share the RoU permission already acquired by its joint venture pipeline company Petronet-CCK for a separate 3.3m t/y pipeline – which began operation in April 2002 - to evacuate petroleum products from Kochi to Coimbatore.

BPCL’s proposed Rs300cr ($55m) LPG pipeline will run parallel to Petronet-CCK’s pipeline through Kerala’s Thrissur and Palakkad districts and transport 1m t/y of LPG to markets in Tamil Nadu. BPCL is also proposing a separate 16-inch diameter, 294-km petroleum products pipeline from Irugur in Tamil Nadu to Devangonthi in Karnataka.

BPCL will feed the proposed 3.5m t/y pipeline with oil products through its established pipeline from the Kochi refinery to Karur in Tamil Nadu, passing through Irugur. BPCL sent EoIs to the Petroleum & Natural Gas Regulatory Board on December 3, seeking mandatory authorisation to lay the two pipelines.

“We hope to receive authorisation by November this year (2013),” adds BPCL. By July this year, BPCL expects to float a tender to hire a Project Management Consultant to lay the two pipelines but will only give a LoA to the selected contractor after receiving PNGRB authorisation.

“We expect to hire the PMC by January 2014,” we hear. BPCL expects to complete both pipelines within 24 months of hiring the PMC or by December 2015.

Getting RoU permission for the Irugur to Devangonthi pipeline shouldn’t be a problem as the Kerala and Tamil Nadu state governments support the project.

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