New Delhi, India — MININGREVIEW.COM — 04 June 2010 – A joint venture between India’s Tata Group steel giant and South Africa’s Sasol plans to invest US$10 billion (R75 billion) in a coal-to-liquid project in the eastern Indian state of Orissa by 2018.
Announcing this here, Sasol’s India president Mark Schnell told reporters that production of fuel from the Orissa coal block would begin in 2018 and would be ramped up to 80 000 barrels per day of oil product within a year.
“The project is in its early stages, and investment will be equally divided between the two partners,” he said. “While the joint venture had initially estimated spending of US$10 billion (R75 million), actual investment may be lower than that.”
Schnell went on to say that the total capital investment would be made for acquisition of mines, land and setting up the plant and logistics. The production could be 75% ultra clean diesel and 25 % chemical naphtha. Some amount of urea, ammonia and jet fuel might also be produced.
“Our initial focus will be on the domestic market. A sizeable quantity of clean diesel will be produced,” Schnell continued.
He explained that the life of the field was 25 to 30 years. The block was expected to have 1.5 billion tonnes of geological reserves, and at a peak rate the joint venture expected to produce 20Mtpa of coal, in order to produce about 80 000 barrels per day of liquid oil product.
India has the world’s fourth largest coal reserves and it imports about two-thirds of its crude oil requirements.