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Friday, March 30, 2007

Reliance Gas Pipeline to Conncet Chennai - Tuticorin

Reliance Industries Ltd., plans to build two gas pipelines in southern India, the government said on Friday, that could help the energy explorer supply gas from its deep-sea fields to retail consumers.

The petrochemicals to oil refiner aims to produce 80 million cubic metres of gas a day (mmscmd) by mid-2008 from its two fields in the prolific Krishna Godavari basin.

Oil Ministry said in an advertisement on Friday that Reliance Gas Transportation Infrastructure Ltd., a group firm, had submitted a proposal to lay a 670 km pipeline from Chennai to Tuticorin in Tamil Nadu.

It also wants to build another 660 km pipeline from Chennai to Mangalore in the neighbouring state of Karnataka, via Bangalore, the ministry said.

The advertisements in local newspapers did not disclose the cost of the two projects, and a Reliance spokesman could not give details immediately.

Reliance is already constructing a 1,400 km pipeline to transport natural gas from the deep-sea fields off India's east coast to the western regions of the country.

Earlier this month, P.M.S. Prasad, head of Reliance's oil and gas business, said the company planned to build city gas distribution networks in Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Gujarat and West Bengal.

The Oil Ministry said the two new projects were to be developed on a common carrier basis, making it mandatory for Reliance to offer 33 percent of each pipeline's total capacity to other firms.

"The interested party would have to enter into a take or pay contract or any other mutually agreeable contract with the owner for usage of the proposed pipeline," the ministry said.

India produces 95 mmscmd of gas and the government expects this to rise to more than 190 mmscmd by 2009 after a series of gas finds off the east coast, including by Reliance, come on stream.

Source: Reuters India

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