Gujarat Gas lives in hope for Ahmedabad gas NOC

Vol 7, PW 20 (17 Dec 03) People & Policy
     

Gujarat Gas is unwilling to take no for an answer in its application for a permit to set up a City Gas Distribution network in Ahmedabad.

Such is the companys optimism that it continues to lobby with the state government to get a No Objection Certificate for the walled city, despite its award to Gujarat Adani Energy. Gujarat Gas just refuses to accept that its Ahmedabad application has been shelved, a top Gujarat official tells PETROWATCH.

During a 4th December meeting with Gujarat CM Narendra Modi (See above), BG India chief Nigel Shaw also asked about the Gujarat Gas applications for Local (Gas) Distribution Zone licences for Ahmedabad and Vapi. Modi has asked Gujarat Gas to forget Ahmedabad and concentrate on Vapi, explains the official: The government has already decided there will be no overlapping of NOCs in any circle.

According to the official, this decision should put an end to any confusion about exclusivity. With an obvious reference to Gujarat Gas, he said, tongue firmly in cheek: Some companies are strongly propagating exclusivity but still making applications for circles that have already been awarded.

So much for exclusivity. He adds: We have several other circles lined up and Gujarat Gas is welcome to apply for these.

Privately, Gujarat officials reassure Gujarat Gas that it will receive its NOC for Vapi before March 2004. Construction of Gujarat Petronets gas grid in south Gujarat is developing at a good pace, he adds, Award of the Vapi circle would more or less coincide with its completion.

On 18th July 2002, local authorities announced a policy to award City Gas Distribution licences for the supply of natural gas to industrial, commercial, residential and transport (CNG) users. So far the state government has awarded six circles to three companies: Gujarat Adani for Ahmedabad and Vadodra, GAIL for Surendranagar and Rakjot and Bharat Petroleum for Mehsana and Gandhinagar.

This distribution policy is successful, claims the official. We have already received investment proposals cumulatively amounting to Rs3, 600cr ($782.6m).