IOCL Current Affairs - 2020

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India Russia sign first ever Term Contract to import crude oil to India

On February 5, 2020, the Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas Shri Dharmendra Pradhan and the Chairman of Rosneft (Russia’s largest oil producing company) signed the first ever term contract. According to the contract India will import 2 million metric tonnes of Urals grade crude oil.

Highlights

The agreement was signed between IOCL and Rosneft. The companies discussed on energy cooperation and hydrocarbon enhancement.

Rosneft is the largest oil producing company in Russia. The company is extended over 20 countries in the world. The company is to bid in the disinvestment of BPCL (Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited). On November 20, 2019, the Union cabinet approved to privatize BPCL selling 52.98% of its stakes to private sector.

India and Russia Oil Ties

After the crude oil agreement, India and Russia are also looking for ways to sign agreements to bring LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) supplies from Russia. Russia is estimated to posses 10 to 14 billion tonnes of oil and 15 trillion cubic metres of gas. The rich resources of Russia extends till Serbia in Pacific Ocean in the far East region.

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“APNA UREA-SonaUgle” brand of HURL launched-To increase Urea Production

The APNA UREA-SonaUgle brand of HURL (Hindustan Urvarak & Rasayan Limited) was launched by the Union Minister of Chemicals and Fertilizers Shri D V Sadananda Gowda.

Recent developments in Urea Production

In order to make India self-sufficient in Urea, the Union Government approved revival of three Urea plants located in Sindri, Gorakhpur and Barauni. The other two major fertilizer plants at Talcher and Ramagundam are also to be reopened. With these measures GoI projects that the annual production of Urea is to increase by 63.5 lakh metric tonnes per annum.

What is HURL?

HURL is a joint venture of Indian Maharatna companies namely IOCL (Indian Oil Corporation Limited), NTPC (National Thermal Power Corporation) and Coal India Limited. The objective of HURL is to make India self-reliant in Urea. The following are the targets set for HURL

  • Revival of three Urea plants by 2021
  • Increase neem coated urea production capacity to 38.1 lakh metric tonnes per annum
  • To start operations of energy efficient and environment friendly natural gas-based fertilizer plants by 2021. The feedstock (Natural Gas) is to be supplied by GAIL.

Current Scenario of Urea Production

According to National Urea Policy 2015, there are totally 31 Urea producing plants in India. Out of these, 28 units Natural Gas as feedstock. The rest of the units use Naphtha as feedstock.

Concerns

The production of urea is water consuming process. The current annual water consumption of urea manufacturing plants as of June 2019 is 191 million cubic metres. Some of the urea plants in India are yet to abide the 2003 Corporate Responsibility for Environment Protection Guidelines, 2003 that was issued by CPCB (Central Pollution Control Board).

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