India’s strong economic and industrial growth, along with a young, urbanizing population, offers many opportunities for collaboration as the country requires huge investments in new chemical capacity to meet growing demand, said Raghavendra Rao, Secretary, Chemicals and Petrochemicals, at India’s Department of Chemicals and Petrochemicals at yesterday’s opening Annual GPCA Forum session.
“To meet growing demand, India will need five crackers by 2025, and an additional 14 by 2040,” he said, adding that the investment potential in petrochemicals alone for these crackers is about USD 65 billion.
India’s strong demand growth for petrochemical intermediates also offers “Make in India” opportunities for chemical players, Rao told delegates.
There is a huge demand-capacity gap in India expected in the 2021 fiscal year for example, with deficits expected in high-density polyethylene (HDPE) and linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE) despite recent capacity expansions, he said.
Deficits are also expected in methanol, propylene and C6-based derivatives, while demand for paraxylene (PX), purified terephthalic acid (PTA) and monoethylene glycol (MEG) are expected to rise driven by the growth in polyesters, Rao said.
The Indian government has also taken several steps to facilitate investments in the country in recent times, Rao said. This includes investments in infrastructure, mega-investments regions, a more favourable tax system and promoting skilled manpower and labor.
The government has also encouraged development and improvement of the country’s four Petroleum, Chemicals and Petrochemical Investment Regions (PCPIRs) in Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Gujarat.
Rao pointed the recent move by Saudi Aramco and ADNOC in June this year to jointly develop and build an integrated refinery and petrochemical complex in Ratnagiri, Maharashtra.
The complex will have a processing capacity of 1.2 million bbl/day of crude oil, or 60 million tons/year and is set to produce 10m tons/year of petrochemical products.