HPCL VR expansion on track


Aditya Sabharwal

Oil marketing major HPCL’s modernization plans at its Vizag refinery is all set to be commissioned by late next year.

In a conversation to Vizag Industrial Scan Mr V Ratan Raj, HPCL’s chief general manager (I/c) Visakh refinery stated ‘If all goes as planned our modernization project shall be completed by the second quarter of 2020’.

Once all the plants are commissioned the refining capacity of the Visakh refinery shall increase from the current 8 mtpa to 15 mtpa. This enhancement shall also bring in 300 new jobs.

The Visakh refinery’s modernization project is being undertaken at a mammoth cost of Rs 21000 crores. Just recently the Vizag unit received two major equipments for its modernization works i.e. Crude & Vacuum columns for the CDU.

The Crude Distillation Unit (CDU) is one of the process units being set up under this project in which the Crude & Vacuum columns are the main equipment in the CDU.

Both the crude and vacuum columns were manufactured by L&T at its Hazira plant and were transported by sea to HPCL’s Vizag unit.

The Crude column measured approximately 7m in diameter, 76 meters in length and 700MT in weight while the vacuum column measured approximately 12 meters in diameter, 63 meters in length and 900 MT in weight.

It was further informed that ten more equipments are expected in the next 6 months by sea, of which three are expected in the period May-June,2019.

Talking on the operations the CGM stated that the unit expects to see a rise in their GRM’s from the current $4-$5 per barrel to $6-7$ per barrel soon.

Diesel contributes to the majority production at the Vizag refinery standing at 40% while the remaining product share includes petrol, bitumen, ATF and others.

Just recently HPCL announced its April-December 2018 results wherein it recorded Profit After Tax of Rs. 3,059 crore as compared to Rs 4,609 crore for corresponding period of previous year.

The decrease in Net Profit was mainly attributed to impact of inventory losses due to crude price volatility, higher fuel and loss component due to higher average crude price and exchange rate fluctuations, partially offset by better product cracks on diesel and increased other operating income.

However gross sales increased by 26% to Rs. 2,22,872 crore during April-December, 2018 as compared to Rs. 1,76,876 crore for corresponding period of the previous year.

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