Essar to invest up to Rs 1,000 crore by FY18 in West Bengal

(Representative file photo)
 West Bengal is set to get Rs 700-1,000 crore investment in ramping up coal-bed methane (CBM) production from Essar Oil at Ranigunj but it could jump significantly if shale opportunity opens up.

“We have invested Rs 3,300 crore at our Ranigunj CBM block and already achieved one million scmd production. We will have to pump additional Rs 700-1,000 crore to reach the peak projected production of three million scmd capacity,” Essar Exploration & production CEO Manish Maheswari said here on Wednesday.

The company expects to reach production to three million scmd by mid of next financial year 2017-18.

Maheswari said, “We will put our energies in shale gas once the detailed guidelines and clarifications from Director General of hydrocarbons comes.”

Maheswari, however, did not divulge the investment that could go in for shale form of unconventional gas since it is at a preliminary stage.

However, the company is optimistic on the Hydrocarbon Exploration Licensing Policy of March, 2016 and has already begun preliminary work on it.

According to estimates, 8 tcf shale gas has been found at Raniganj coal block.

The West Bengal government is expected to reap a handsome Rs 2,500 crore as royalty from this CBM block.

Essar has commenced supply of CBM, presently at around 2,00,000 scmd, for pre-commissioning activities to Matix Fertilisers, one of the world’s largest single stream urea plant and the first designed for CBM as the feedstock.

With installed capacity of 1.3 million tonnes per annum of urea for an investment of Rs 6,000 crore, Matix Fertilisers shall commence urea production using CBM from Raniganj in the third quarter of FY2016-17, Essar officials said.
Besides Raniganj, Essar has high quality acreages of around 2,700 sq km for CBM exploration and production in India spread across Odisha, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh.
Aggregated across these assets, the gas-initial-in-place have been estimated to be in excess of 6 tcf.
[Source:- timesofindia.indiatimes]