India’s BPCL delays start-up of Kochi propylene derivatives complex

Author: Priya Jestin


MUMBAI (ICIS)--India’s Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd (BPCL) has delayed the start-up of its propylene derivative petrochemical products (PDPP) complex in Kochi due to the coronavirus pandemic, a company source said on Wednesday.

The Indian rupees (Rs) 52.5bn ($690m) project with a total capacity of 562,000 tonnes/year was supposed to start operations in June 2020.

It will use up 250,000 tonnes/year propylene feedstock from BPCL’s Kochi refinery to produce acrylic acid, oxo alcohols and acrylates.

“All units are mechanically completed and commissioning activities are ongoing,” the company source said.

The complex is expected to produce 160,000 tonnes/year of acrylic acid; 212,000 tonnes/year oxo alcohols (n-butanol, iso butanol and a 2-ethyl hexanol); and 190,000 tonnes/year of acrylates (butyl acrylate and 2-ethyl hexyl acrylate), based on the risk assessment report for the project in the fiscal year 2018-2019.

Project commissioning would involve some licenses, for which license experts from Europe have to come physically to the Kochi complex, the company source said.

Travel restrictions imposed to contain the coronavirus pandemic have caused some delays in the process, he added.

“It would be difficult to put a timeline to the commissioning as the experts from Europe may not be comfortable visiting India if the covid [coronavirus disease] situation in the country turned worse,” he said.

As of 16 June, India has over 332,424 confirmed coronavirus cases with 9,900 deaths, according to official data from the Indian Ministry of Health.

($1 = Rs76.23)

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