Rs 80,000 cr to be invested in petroleum sector in Assam: Dharmendra Pradhan
Guwahati, June 24 (IBNS): Union Minister of State (independent) Petroleum & Natural Gas, Dharmendra Pradhan on Friday said that 1,30,000 crore investments would take place in the petroleum sector out of which Rs 80,000 crore will be invested in Assam alone by 2030.
During a press conference held at Guwahati, the Union Minister said that the investments of Rs 80,000 crore in the petroleum sector would bring about sea-change in development of Assam.
Of the total whopping amount, Rs 6,000 crore will be invested in this current financial year.
“From Rs 4,500 crore the State is getting as revenue from the petroleum sector, we want to raise it in the range of Rs 8,000-Rs 10,000 crore in the next couple of years,” Pradhan said.
Pradhan said that the Act East Policy of Prime Minister Narendra Modi would help to strengthen the petroleum sector in Assam and boost its economy.
“The Ministry of Petroleum will help to augment the economy insofar as enhancement capacity of oil refineries, laying of new pipe lines, replacement of old machineries with latest ones and setting up of new industries are concerned,” Pradhan said.
“We have set the roadmap in our 2030 Vision Document and have already begun our work in a mission mode to boost the oil sector in the State. Government of India, Government of Assam, OIL, ONGC and other stake holders would partner together to bolster Assam’s economy in a big way,” the Union minister said.
The Union Petroleum Minister said that the Ministry has plans on the anvil to expand the capacity of the Guwahati, Bongaigaon, Digboi and Numaligarh Refineries.
Pradhan said that mapping has been carried out and plans are afoot to increase the consumption of liquefied petroleum products and to increase the per capita consumption of power.
The Union minister said that NRL has started sending oil through pipeline to Bangladesh and plans are on the pipeline to make Assam the ‘hub of petroleum products’ by connecting it with Bhutan, Bangladesh, Myanmar and South East Asian countries.
“Assam can meet the petroleum requirements of the neighbouring countries and beyond,” Pradhan said.
The Minister pointed out that additional 5,000 pipeline network would be laid which would help to boost the production of crude oil, LPG and natural gas.
Pradhan said that crude oil would be brought from Nigeria through pipelines to increase the production capacity of the oil refineries in Assam.
The Union Minister requested the Assam government not to levy entry tax on imported crude with a view to ‘increase the volume of imported crude oil’.
Pradhan said issues like land acquisition and environmental clearance will be done expeditiously to pave the way for laying of new pipelines and exploration of new oil fields.
Pradhan said that a road show will be held in Guwahati on Saturday for bidding of 12 oil fields in Assam of the 67 oil fields identified in the country as a whole.
Pradhan said that measures will be taken to step up gas production in Lakwa and Namrup power plants to the tune of 9 MM CMD by OIL and ONGC, as a result, 447 MW of power will be generated.
The Union Minister said that under the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana, 29 lakh BPL women will be provided LPG connections in Assam.
Pradhan said that the scheme will be launched at Majuli, Chief Minister’s constituency soon.
The Union Minister assured to provide dry gas to the gas companies and the cost of dryers will be borne by OIL and ONGC.
As regards oil crude royalty due to the State, Pradhan asked the Assam government to file a case in the Supreme Court as Gujarat did to get the arrears amounting to Rs 1450 crore as in 2014.
In this connection, he assured his Ministry’s help to get the rightful dues to the State.
Pradhan said that meetings will be held bi-monthly in Delhi and Dispur between the officials of Government of India and Government of Assam to sort out any issues expeditiously.
Assam CM Sarbananda Sonowal said that the roadmap for exploring hydro carbon has been laid in the Vision Document 2030.
Sonowal while thanking Pradhan for evincing keen interest in developing the petroleum sector, said the bold steps initiated would help to increase petroleum production, gas production and setting up of new industries, including downstream industries.
Sonowal hoped that the coming up of new industries would help to create employment opportunities in a big way.
The Assam CM said that Prime Minister’s Act East Policy would help to bolster the economy of the State and increased revenue from oil production would be a great boost.
“Government of India, Government of Assam, OIL, ONGC and other stakeholders will have to join hands together to take the State to new economic heights,” Sonowal said.
Earlier the Union minister had attended a meeting, where was attended by Assam Industries and Commerce minister Chandra Mohan Patowary, Chief Secretary VK Pipersenia, Additional Chief Secretary KV Eapen, Additional Chief Secreatary RT Jindal, Commissioner & Secretary of Finance Dr. Ravi Kota, companies of oil heads including ONGC, OIL and other major stakeholders.
(Reporting by Hemanta Kumar Nath)
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