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Mangalore Refineries charts retail blueprint

Calcutta, March 16: Mangalore Refineries and Petrochemicals Ltd (MRPL), which is set to be a subsidiary of Oil and Natural Gas Corporation, is gearing up to launch marketing network in the first half of next financial year in order to tap the retail segment in a big way.

“The retailing plan will complete the full circle for ONGC, right from exploration to marketing petro products. We are preparing a blue-print for the MRPL products retailing which will be started next year,” says Subir Raha, chairman of ONGC.

Speaking to The Telegraph, Raha said MRPL products will have a cost advantage as it has a very modern plant.

“With our presence in MRPL, the company will have no crisis for crude sourcing. Moreover, it will have a 2 per cent sales tax benefit, which itself will make a huge difference as far as the cost of production is concerned,” he said.

The marketing network is likely to be established in the south where MRPL has production facilities.

Sources said the Mangalore-Hassan-Bangalore pipeline is already in a very advanced stage of being commissioned. Once this pipeline is commissioned, products from MRPL can be transported to Bangalore and even the interiors of Karnataka, where consumption level is very high. MRPL will also launch marketing network in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.

Raha said a committee will be set up soon, representing both ONGC and MRPL, to look into all the aspects of the retail network. “We have to recruit people who are adept with retailing similar products,” he said.

MRPL, which has a production capacity of 9.69 million tonnes per annum, is also making arrangements for direct sale and exports, he added.

ONGC, which has recently acquired the 37.4 per cent stake in MRPL from the AV Birla group, has plans to invest Rs 600 crore for a thorough financial restructuring of the company.

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