Oil refinery
India's biggest oil refinery set up by IOC, BPCL and HPCL would come up on the west coast. Pictured: Representational Image of an Oil Refinery.Reuters

State-run refiners Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL) and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited (HPCL) are planning to set up India's biggest oil refinery. The refinery would come up on the west coast and would cost $30 billion (about Rs. 2 lakh crore).

"The 60 million tonnes a year refinery and a mega petrochemical complex will be set up in two phases. Phase one will be 40 million tonnes together with an aromatic complex, naphtha cracker and polymer complex," Sanjeev Singh, director of refineries at IOC, was quoted as saying by Press Trust of India.

Phase one would require an initial investment of Rs. 1.2-1.5 lakh crore and would take about 5-6 years to build it from the time the land is acquired. According to an official quoted by PTI, it would require about 12,000-15,000 acres of land and about three sites on the coast of Maharashtra are being explored for the purpose.

BPCL and HPCL are on the lookout for a bigger refinery as they face constraints at their Mumbai units.The second phase, on the other hand, would require an initial investment of about Rs. 50,000-60,000 crore.

Indian Oil wanted to set up a refinery on the west coast of India in a bid to cater to consumers in South and West because most of the refineries are situated in the northern region. Singh said the refinery being located on the west coast has greater significance as it would be easier to import crude oil from the Middle East, Africa and then ship it to other parts of the country.

The official quoted by PTI said "the refinery will produce petrol, diesel, ATF and feedstock for petrochemical plants in plastic, chemical and textile industries in Maharashtra."

According to a report by the International Energy Agency (IEA), India's oil demand is expected to reach about 458 million tonnes by 2040.

[1 lakh = 100,000 | 1 crore = 10 million | 100 crore = 1 billion]

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