Government-run Rashtriya Chemicals and Fertilizers Ltd (RCF) recently said it has taken up projects of more than Rs.15,000 crore in domestic as well as international markets.
“We are investing Rs.8,000 crore in a coal-based fertiliser plant at Talcher in Odisha, Rs.5,530 crore project of additional ammonia and urea at Thal (Maharashtra), Rs.209 crore sewage treatment plant at Trombay (in Mumbai), Rs.950 crore project of energy conservation and $903 million urea project in Iran over the next few years,” RCF chairman and managing director Manoj Mishra said.
In the Iran project, a four-way joint venture, RCF’s share is worth Rs.500 crore.“We have a net worth of Rs.2,800 crore and will be able to raise up to Rs.10,000 crore of both debt and equity. We will be able to fund these projects in a phased manner over the next few years,” Mishra said.
The mini-ratna public sector undertaking, along with Coal India Ltd (CIL), GAIL (India) Ltd and Fertilizer Corporation of India Ltd (FCIL), is setting up a fertiliser complex at Talcher, comprising 2,200 million tonne per day (MTPD) ammonia plant and 3,850 MTPD urea unit through coal gasification route as feed stock.
Coal for the project will be made available by CIL from nearby fields. Land and certain facilities will be provided by FCIL.The project, which will utilise state-of-the-art coal gasification technology, will be executed by a joint venture company, Talcher Fertilizers Ltd.
The ammonia synthesis and urea plants will be built on lump sum turnkey (LSTK) basis for which pre-qualification bids have been invited and pre-qualified parties shortlisted, he said.
Project capital cost is estimated to be about Rs.8,000 crore. Tender has been issued to pre-qualified LSTK vendors.
Selection of coal gasification technology and coal block allocation is underway, Mishra said.
The project is of strategic importance as it aims to make breakthrough for an alternative source of feedstock in the form of abundantly available coal from domestic sources in place of natural gas. It will aid much needed urea production capacity for the eastern part of the country, he added.
RCF also proposes to expand urea capacity at Thal by setting up one single stream ammonia plant of 2,200 MTPD capacity and one single stream urea plant of capacity 3,850 MTPD at a cost of Rs.5,530 crore.
The project is awaiting approval from the Centre, he said.The sewage treatment plant (STP) at Trombay will cost Rs.209 crore.
In view of ensuring water availability, RCF is setting up additional STP adjacent to the existing one with a capacity to treat 22.75 million litre per day (MLD) of municipal sewage to produce about 15 MLD of treated water, Mishra said.
A portion of the treated process water will be supplied to Bharat Petroleum Corp. Ltd (BPCL) on mutually agreed terms.
At Trombay and Thal units, RCF is implementing energy conservation projects by investing around Rs.950 crore. The company is also exploring the possibility of setting up potassic and phosphatic plants abroad, Mishra said without giving investment details.
Mishra said the PSU was nominated by the government, along with Gujarat State Fertilisers Corp. Ltd (GSFC), for the proposed 1.3 million tonne urea plant in Iran.
Faradast Energy Falat Co. (FALAT) of Iran has been shortlisted as the prospective local partner.The consortium is planning to set up an ammonia and urea plant in Chabahar in Iran, using natural gas as feedstock, which is abundant in that country, with an estimated investment of $903 million.
Commenting on financial performance of the company, Mishra said total income rose to Rs.8,761 crore in the financial year ended 2015-16 compared with Rs.7,787 crore in the previous year.The company’s margins, besides sales of both fertilisers and industrial products, have been adversely affected by a host of factors, Mishra said.
These include stringent energy norms specified by the government, higher gas price for non-urea operations, abundant availability of cheap imported chemicals, steep depreciation in rupee and delayed disbursement of subsidy, he said, adding the good monsoon this year will help the fertiliser industry.