Zuari Industries Ltd (ZIL), the country’s largest importer of fertilizers and agricultural inputs, is in the process of acquiring land and obtaining environment clearances for its proposed 1.3 million tonne (mt) gas-based urea plant at Belgaum in Karnataka.
A 1,400-km-long pipeline is scheduled to come up by March 2012 and it would bring the gas from the Petronet LNG’s Dahej terminal. They hope to commission the unit in 2015-16.
In a parallel development ZIL has already made investments to convert the feedstock for its existing 0.4 mt urea unit at Zuari Nagar (Goa) from naphtha to gas. They hope to get the gas from January 2012, which should come through a separate 120-km spur pipeline from Belgaum, but they also stated that even in case the gas should be imported, anyhow it will work out much cheaper than naphtha. The average production cost of urea from gas-based plants in India was estimated in 2009-10, to be less than a third compared to units running on naphtha.
Established in 1967 Zuari Industries Ltd. is an Agri-Input company belonging to the KK Birla Group of Companies.