The Indian Oil Corporation Ltd (IOCL) is planning to expand its Ennore LPG bottling plant by adding another carousel (bottling line), thus increasing the output to 20,500 tonnes per month from its present 15,000 tonnes per month. The facility will be established at a cost of ₹35.4 crore and will be completed in two years.
The plant has been operational since 2000 and its storage capacity would be augmented with the addition of three 450 tonnes mounded bullet tanks, officials said. The proposed expansion of storage has been envisaged for ensuring uninterrupted supply of domestic LPG cylinders, said an official of the IOC. Presently, the facility has an LPG storage capacity of 900 tonnes in six mounded bullets.
On the addition of one carousel, IOCL officials explained that capacity expansion in existing locations was a routine infrastructure addition activity to cater to increased demand.
“Domestic LPG usage increases by 7-8% annually and the company has set a target for the Prime Minister’s Ujjwala Scheme too in the State. It is also working to increase commercial cylinder usage among various sectors, including restaurants and industries. It had recently introduced a 450-kg jumbo cylinder,” explained an industry watcher. In addition to the storage capacity augmentation as a routine activity, upgradation of other equipment too has also been planned.
Call to avoid strikes
Despite an increase in the number of consumers, IOC has been able to manage supply without much waiting time for consumers from when the refills are booked. Dealers, who expressed happiness over the expansion plans, however, said that the company must ensure that strikes do not happen either by transporters or by the contract labourers in the bottling plants. “Though the situation has improved, strikes have created huge backlogs in the past,” said a dealer. Read more