One of the prime reasons behind the present dismal scenario is the non-completion of the pipelines meant to take gas to Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.

Petronet’s liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal here, commissioned last month, is looking at alternatives to minimise its losses arising out of low capacity utilization. Petronet LNG Limited, which operates the terminal of 5 mmtpa (million metric tonnes per annum) is considering the possibility of leasing out one of the two storage tanks constructed at Puthuvype here.

An announcement on the plan to lease out part of the terminal is understood to have been made by the company top brass, but concrete proposals or directions are yet to reach the local unit. The proposal was floated earlier during a meeting of petroleum sector held here two months ago. Petronet LNG Limited was apparently repeating the proposals made by the Petroleum Secretary then.

The leasing out activity could be done based on an international bidding. It could help worldwide operators in the LNG sector to stock gas and transport it to various destinations based on demand. Countries like Japan could be interested in such an arrangement, according to sources in the industry.

The total investment in the Kochi terminal is to the tune of Rs.4600 crore. With the present capacity utilisation falling below 10 per cent , the company will have to find alternative means to repay debts incurred on the infrastructure.

One of the prime reasons behind the present dismal scenario is the non-completion of the pipelines meant to take gas to Tamil Nadu and Karnataka through the proposed pipeline in the Kochi-Koottanad-Bangalore and Koottanad-Mangalore sector. None is able to give a time-frame for completion of the pipeline project undertaken by Gail India. The government has not been able to clear hurdles in land acquisition for the laying of the pipelines.

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