India’s OPaL inches forward

By Malini Hariharan

Regular readers of the blog will remember a November post that had highlighted delays at ONGC Petro-Additions Ltd’s (OPaL) 1.1m tonnes/year cracker project at Dahej on the west coast of India.

This time there is some progress to report. OPaL has finally selected Chevron Philips Chemical to provide technology for a standalone 340,000 tonens/year high-density polyethylene (HDPE) plant. The engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract for this plant was awarded to South Korea’s Daelim.

The other development is on the financial side with Gail (India) receiving board approval for a 19% stake in OPaL. However, Gail is said to be still negotiating for marketing rights from the project.

“The project is on track now,” said a source close to OPaL.

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Pic source: www.smu.ca

But it is probably a little early to say this as OPaL has yet to award the lump sum turnkey contract for a swing polyethylene plant and a polypropylene (PP) unit.

“Bids will be submitted this week; 12 contractors have been shortlisted,” the source added.

A second source close to developments does not expect the LSTK contract to be awarded before April

What all of this means is that while the project is moving forward it is still very likely that the company will miss its Q1 2013 target date.

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