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MRPL set to commission offshore moor in August

Mahesh Kulkarni / Chennai/ Bangalore 30 Jul 12 | 12:48 AM

Single point mooring to help receive crude oil in very large carriers

Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd (MRPL), an ONGC company, is all set to commission the Single Point Mooring (SPM) system off the New Mangalore Port in August. This would enable it to receive crude oil in very large crude carriers (VLCC) for the first time for its refinery at Mangalore.

MRPL buys crude in Aframax vessels that can bring about 650,000 barrels of crude oil. The commissioning of SPM will enable MRPL to receive 250,000 tonnes at a time, PP Upadhya, managing director, MRPL, said.

The Single Point Mooring is a facility in the sea that will help receive crude oil in very large crude carrier tankers. Already refineries in Kochi, Vadinar and Jamnagar use the SPM system to receive crude oil.

“The SPM is ready for commissioning. We are waiting for the approval from the ministry and we wish to start the system on a trial basis by the first week of August. It will be fully operational by January 2013," he told Business Standard.

MRPL has invested Rs 1,044 crore in setting up the SPM. The boards of MRPL and ONGC approved the project in June and July, 2010, respectively. The construction of the project was entrusted to Engineers India. The company has laid a 17-km long pipeline under the seabed off New Mangalore Port where a VLCC offloads the crude and transport it to the refinery at Surathkal near Mangalore, Upadhya said.

He said MRPL would use the storage tanks of Indian Strategic Petroleum Reserve Ltd (ISPRL) in Mangalore to store crude oil. Until ISPRL’s storage tanks are constructed, the company would use its own tanks, he said.

MRPL is implementing Phase III of the refinery expansion with the objective of increasing the capacity to 15 MMTPA from 9 MMTPA. It aims to process more of low price high sulphur/high acid, heavy crude oils, increasing the distillate yield by upgrading low value black oils, producing value-added products like propylene and upgrade of its total diesel pool to superior (Euro IIIV) grade. The estimated cost of the project is Rs 12,160.26 crore.

Upadhya said the company would commission its polypropylene unit in January or February 2013, which will mark the completion of its Phase-III expansion. The polypropylene unit work has been integrated with the Phase III project at an estimated capex of Rs 1,803.78 crore. The polypropylene project has achieved a progress of 80 per cent and the balance work will be completed by January next year, he said.

Engineers India Ltd has been engaged to implement the project under open book execution methodology. Novelene Technology, Germany, has been selected licensor for the project.

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