The Union Cabinet has approved the revival of defunct Fertilizer Units in Gorakhpur, Sindri and Barauni. These include two closed urea units of Fertilizer Corporation India (FCIL) at Sindri (Jharkhand) and Gorakhpur (Uttar Pradesh) and Barauni (Bihar) unit of Hindustan Fertilizers Corporation Limited (HFCL).
The setting up of new units at Sindri, Gorakhpur and Barauni will meet the growing demand of urea in Bihar, West Bengal and Jharkhand. It will also ease the pressure on railway and road infrastructure due to long distance transportation of urea from Western and Central Regions and thereby saving in Govt. subsidy on freight. It will also accelerate the economic development of the region. Apart from growth of regional economy, this unit will create opportunities for 1,200 direct and 4,500 indirect employments.
GAIL (India) Limited has planned to lay a gas pipeline from Jagdishpur to Haldia. These units will serve as anchor customer for this pipeline and ensure its viability. Commissioning Jagdishpur-Haldia gas pipeline (JHPL) is important for development of critical infrastructure in Eastern India and will have multiplier effect on economic growth of the region.
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) earlier had approved gas pooling for urea sector which will enable these units to get gas at pooled price on its revival which will make the urea units globally competitive.
These units were lying defunct since their closure during 1990-2002. Therefore, the units and other associated facilities were lying unutilized. It is important to mention here that there is no functional urea unit in the Eastern part of the country except two small units at Namrup (Assam). Earlier in 2015, Government had approved revival of these three units through ‘bidding route’. However, the bidding process could not be carried forward due to receipt of only one application each against ‘Request for Qualifications’ (RFQs) for revival of Gorakhpur and Sindri units of FCIL.
The annual consumption of urea in the country is approximately 320 lakh metric tonnes (LMT), out of which 245 LMT is produced indigenously and rest is imported. To enhance the production of urea indigenously, the Government had earlier also approved the revival of Talcher (Odisha) and Ramagundam (Telangana) units of FCIL by PSUs through ‘nomination route’.