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ONGC venture keen to sign offtake pacts

New Delhi, Nov. 13: ONGC Mangalore Petrochemicals — promoted by ONGC and Mangalore Refineries & Petrochemicals Ltd (MRPL) — plans to commission its Rs 5,700-crore plant in the first quarter of the next financial year and is scouting for buyers of paraxylene and benzene.

“The commercial production is planned from the first quarter of 2013-14 and the production is expected to be ramped up to 80 per cent of its capacity within six months of commissioning,” a senior MRPL official said.

The capacity of the aromatics complex will be about 9.2 lakh tonnes per annum of paraxylene and 2.70 lakh tonnes per annum of benzene.

Paraxylene is a key ingredient in the production of intermediates used to make polyester for fabric and PET (polyethylene terephthalate) chips for carbonated soft drink and water bottles. Benzene is used to manufacture chemicals used in the production of polymers, plastics, resins, and nylon.

The aromatics complex will be integrated with an existing MRPL refinery complex located in the Mangalore special economic zone and will use the naphtha and aromatic-rich stream from the refinery as feedstock to produce aromatics.

The state-owned firm has invited bids for long- and short-term offtake of paraxylene and benzene.

The firm plans to sell two-thirds of its annual output on a long-term contract to the domestic sector and the rest abroad.

MRPL, one of the promoters of ONGC Mangalore Petrochemicals, is the operator of a refinery that processes 12.5 million tonnes (mt) of crude oil per year to produce naphtha, petrol, aviation turbine fuel, diesel, fuel oil and bitumen.

The company has posted a massive jump in net profit during the September quarter at Rs 1,185 crore from Rs 24 crore in the year-ago period despite a 31 per cent cut in crude import from Iran because of insurance and shipping constraints.

Officials said the lower imports had no impact on refining operations as the refiner was sourcing crude from the spot market.

MRPL plans to cut imports from Iran to 5mt in the current financial year from 7mt it was sourcing two years back.

 
 
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