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BPCL to infuse Rs one lakh cr over next five years to become future-ready

Tuesday, 28 Sep 2021
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The Bharat Petroleum Corporation plans to invest more than Rs one lakh crore over the next five years in raising petrochemical production capacity, gas business, clean fuel and augmenting marketing infrastructure. 
The investment will help BPCL prepare for the future where conventional fuels and zero-carbon mobility in the form of electric vehicles (EVs) and hydrogen will co-exist, while giving it the option to convert a greater degree of crude oil directly into high-value petrochemicals.
The comapny is looking to create 1,000 MW portfolio of renewable power generation capacity, mostly through acquisitions while also invest in biofuels and hydrogen. 
It is targeting to convert 7,000 out of over 19,000 petrol pumps into energy stations in the medium to long term by offering multiple fueling options like petrol, diesel, flexi fuels, EV charging facility, CNG and eventually hydrogen. 
The company will be investing over Rs one lakh crore at the group level majorly in enhancing petrochemical capacity and improving refining efficiencies (Rs 30,000 crore), gas proliferation (Rs 20,000 crore), upstream oil and gas exploration and production (Rs 18,000 crore) and augmenting (fuel) marketing infrastructure (Rs 18,000 crore).
Besides, it also intends to invest Rs 5,000 crore in renewable energy and another Rs 7,000 crore in biofuels. 
The company owns and operates three refineries at Mumbai, Kochi in Kerala and Bina in Madhya Pradesh which convert crude oil into fuels such as petrol and diesel.
It is adding petrochemical units at the refineries, the latest being at Kochi, to capture value addition from producing speciality chemicals. 
With the commissioning of two units in propylene derivative petrochemical project (PDPP) at Kochi, Kerala refinery in February 2021, the company has joined the leaders in production of niche petrochemicals.
The company will increase its presence in petrochemical space, integrating with its refining activity to diversify and hedge.
BPCL too is investing heavily in city gas networks and setting up 12 LNG fuel stations and the company has license to retail CNG and piped natural gas in 37 geographical areas. 
The firm and its joint ventures have 1,393 CNG stations. EV charging facilities have already been installed in 44 petrol pumps in major cities, and the plan is to ramp it up to 1,000 by 2023-24. 
BPCL has also started pilot of battery swapping for three-wheelers in Kochi (Kerala) and Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh). 
The company is looking to have both solar and wind power generation capacities and would look to convert electricity thus generated into green hydrogen -- the cleanest form of hydrogen. 
BPCL, which has a portfolio of 45 MW of renewable capacity, plans to increase it to 1,000 MW in the next five years. This would benefit the company in various ways -- diversification, offsetting GHG emissions arising from fossil fuel portfolio. 
The company is also setting up an ethanol production unit at Bargarh, Odisha with a production capacity of 100 klpd. It is also exploring the possibility to set up four more ethanol plants in deficit states with a capacity of 100 klpd. 
Of the Rs 18,000 crore upstream investment, an amount of Rs 16,000 crore will be BPCL's share in a LNG project in Mozambique. The planned capex will be funded through a mix of internal resources and borrowings.
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