India's emergence as a global refining hub received a big boost on 14 June 2017.
Three Indian downstream oil majors – Indian Oil Corporation, Bharat Petroleum Corporation and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation – are joining hands to build one of the world's largest integrated refinery-cum-petrochemicals complexes in the Ratnagiri district of Maharashtra state in India.
The joint venture agreement for the West Coast Refinery Project was signed in New Delhi by Sanjiv Singh, chairman, Indian Oil, D Rajkumar, chairman and managing director, Bharat Petroleum, and MK Surana, chairman, Hindustan Petroleum, in the presence of Dharmendra Pradhan, Indian petroleum and natural gas minister, and KD Tripathi, secretary, petroleum, Government of India.
It was earlier reported by Reuters that Saudi Aramco wanted to negotiate with India to take a stake in this planned refinery. Saudi Arabia is seeking to secure customers for its oil amidst a global oversupply.
The 60 million metric tonnes per annum (MMTPA) west coast refinery-cum-petrochemicals complex will be a state-of-the-art unit built at an estimated cost of US$40 billion, and is expected to be commissioned by the year 2022.
It will be a green refinery comprising 50 units designed to operate at the highest level of efficiency, and will be self-sufficient in power and utilities requirements, besides creating a benchmark in environment management.
Designed to produce Euro-VI and above grade transportation fuels, the refinery will have in-built flexibility for processing a wide spectrum of light and heavy crude oil grades, utilising various blending techniques.
It will also be able to produce on-demand product mix of petrol and diesel streams, as well as other refined products and petrochemical streams with the highest level of integration and energy efficiency.
The preliminary configuration study of the project is being carried out by Engineers India Ltd in association with an international consultant. IHS has been entrusted with the market study for the chemicals and petrochemicals to be produced at the complex.
The project will be embedded with social responsibility initiatives and a skill development centre, and a smart township with best-in-class services is also being planned.
Apart from the main refinery-cum-petrochemicals complex, the viability of other associated industries in the vicinity of the project is also being examined so that all stakeholders can be involved in the mega project.