Indian firm seeks partner for fertiliser plant in Iran
Tuesday, 27 January 2004, 08:00 Hrs
DUBAI: An Indian company is scouting for a partner to set up a fertiliser plant in Iran, Chemicals and Fertiliser Minister S.S. Dhindsa has said. "The R.K. Garg group from Punjab is looking for a partner to set up a fertiliser plant in Iran," Dhindsa told IANS on the sidelines of the World Punjabi convention here. The venture will not have any official government participation, the minister said. But in future, the Indian Farmers Fertiliser Cooperative (IFFCO) may buy some of the products, he added. Dhindsa said some UAE based group had shown interest in the project, but refused to divulge details. "But these are just preliminary talks, nothing concrete has materialised," Dhindsa said. On the 1.6 million tonne Oman India Fertiliser Company (Omifco) project, the minister said it was on course to start production in mid-2005. "The project is on schedule and will be completed by the middle of 2005," he said. Oman Oil Company holds a 50 per cent stake in the joint venture, while 50 percent is equally split between two Indian fertiliser firms - IFFCO and Krishak Bharati Cooperative (Kribhco)," Dhindsa said. Oman's oil and gas ministry has agreed to supply gas feedstock for a 20-year period, at a fixed price for the first 10 years. The Omifco project costs $968 million and is being financed by $319 million equity provided by shareholders and $649 million in debt comprising commercial, Italian and French export credit facilities provided by a group of 22 international and regional banks. Omifco had earlier signed three agreements - a urea purchase agreement with the Indian government, an ammonia purchase agreement with the IFFCO and a gas supply agreement with Oman's ministry of oil and gas. Under these agreements, the Indian government and IFFCO are committed to buy the entire urea and surplus ammonia production of the proposed company at a pre-agreed price for 15 and 10 years respectively.