India’s Talcher Fertilizer unit scheduled for completion by September 2024

The urea fertilizer plant at Talcher, initially slated for earlier completion, is now expected to be operational by September 2024. This update was provided by Bhagwant Khuba, Minister of State for Chemicals and Fertilizers, in a recent session of the Rajya Sabha, addressing a query raised by BJD MP Prasanta Nanda.

Khuba cited the Covid-19 pandemic as the primary cause for the delay in the plant’s construction. The outbreak and subsequent waves significantly impeded progress and disrupted the supply of essential components for the factory, which received initial clearance in September 2019.

In a positive development, the Coal Ministry has ensured a long-term supply of coal mines for the plant, complete with the necessary environmental clearances. Key installations, including the arrival of coal gasification equipment, are underway. The plant has made considerable headway, with critical components such as the urea reactor and other vital machinery already in place. Two out of three chimneys are constructed, and the installation of one boiler drum is in progress.

The construction of the water treatment plant is active, and the reservoir’s construction is nearing completion. Additionally, the infrastructure encompassing the administrative building, training facilities, first aid center, a new police station, a guest house, and a central warehouse, has been completed.

Despite these advancements, the Talcher Fertilizer Board has revised its completion forecast to September 2024, based on the current pace of work. The project, with an estimated total expenditure of Rs 4,200 crore ($503.69mn) , represents a significant investment in the region’s industrial and agricultural capabilities. In October this year, Reuters reported that the state-owned companies Coal India, GAIL India, and Rashtriya Chemicals & Fertilizers (RCF) intend to invest 30.95 billion rupees ($371.90mn) in Talcher Fertilizers, securing their ownership stakes of 31.85% for each of three members.

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