National Policy on Petrochemicals released in India

As per India's Union Chemicals and Fertilisers Minister, the Centre has decided to set up four to five new "Petroleum, Chemical, Petrochemical Investment Regions" (PCPIRs) in various States, where the Union Government would be investing around Rs.10,000 crores. About 2,500 hectares would be needed to set up the PCPIRs, but the Centre would play no role in land acquisition and would work only as a facilitator. The State governments of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Gujarat have already submitted their project reports for setting up PCPIRs, and West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Orissa and Maharashtra have expressed their desire for setting up petrochemical regions. It has been decided to grant permission for setting up PCPIRs to the State governments on a first-come-first-serve basis, subject to approval by the centre to the reports submitted by the State Governments. According to the Minister, Rs. 36,000-crore investment was likely to be made in the petrochemical sector during the next five years to increase ethylene capacity from the current level of 2.7 mln tons to 6.9 mln tons. Assuring the industry leaders to take up their demand of reducing the excise duty from the current level of 16% to 8% with the Government, the Minister has stated that the new policy would help India become a major global sourcing centre in petrochemicals and plastics.
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