1. Fertilizer Corporation of India Ltd. (FCIL) has five units at Sindri (Jharkhand), Talcher (Odisha), Ramagundam (Telangana), Gorakhpur (U.P.) & Korba (Chhattisgarh). These units were shutdown during the period 1990-2002. Government of India (GOI) decided in September 2002, to close operations of FCIL and release all its employees under Voluntary Separation Scheme (VSS). These units have huge infrastructure facilities like sizable land bank, residential quarters and office buildings, railway siding, tied up sources of electricity and water.
2. CCEA, in April 2007, had given ‘in principle’ approval to examine the feasibility of reviving units of FCIL and Hindustan Fertilizers Corporation Limited (HFCL) subject to confirmed availability of gas. In October, 2008, the Cabinet had accorded approval to revive FCIL and HFCL units subject to non recourse to Government funding and to consider write off of GOI Loan & interest to the extent required subject to submission of fully tied up proposal for final decision on waiver.
3. An Empowered Committee of Secretaries (ECOS) was constituted in November, 2008 to evaluate all options of revival of closed units, to decide upon the action to be pursued for seeking investments towards revival of each of the unit and recommend to the Government for approval. The ECOS members were Secretaries of Department of Fertilizers (Chairman), Department of Expenditure, Department of Disinvestment, Planning Commission, Department of Public enterprises, Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas. The ECOS after detailed deliberations in various meetings recommended that the revival of these closed units would be through ‘nomination route’ by Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) and by private sector through ‘bidding route’. The nominated PSUs are Steel Authority of India (SAIL) for the Sindri unit, Rashtriya Chemicals and Fertilizers (RCF), GAIL (I) Ltd (GAIL) & Coal India Limited (CIL) for the Talcher unit and Engineers India Limited (EIL) & National Fertilizers Limited (NFL) for the Ramagundam unit of FCIL with 11% equity to FCIL in lieu of land use and infrastructure that would be provided by FCIL at these locations. ECOS recommended Gorakhpur and Korba Units of FCIL and all three units of HFCL be revived through ‘bidding route’.
4. The progress of revival of FCIL units is as under:
4.1 Talcher Unit
The pre-project activities for revival of Talcher unit (Odisha) by the nominated Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs), namely, RCF, CIL, GAIL and FCIL are in progress to set-up a coal-based fertilizer plant. A Joint Venture Company, namely, Talcher Fertilizers Limited, has been incorporated (TFL). Shell Coal Gasification Technology has been selected for setting up of the plant. Concession Agreement to be signed between FCIL & TFL has been finalized, awaiting ECOS approval.
4.2 Ramagundam Unit
A Joint Venture Company, namely, Ramagundam Fertilizers & Chemicals Limited (RFCL) has been incorporated by the nominated PSUs, namely, EIL, NFL and FCIL to set-up a gas-based Urea plant with a capacity of 12.7 lakh MT per annum. RFCL has appointed EIL as EPC Service Provider. Concession Agreement, Lease Agreement & Substitution Agreement have been signed with FCIL. Physical progress of construction at site is around 99.67% as on 15th August 2020. The plant is likely to be commissioned by November 2020.
4.3 Sindri & Gorakhpur units
Union Cabinet decided on 13.7.2016 to revive Sindri & Gorakhpur Units of FCIL, along with Barauni Unit of HFCL by a Joint Venture of nominated PSUs, namely, NTPC, CIL & IOCL. FCIL & HFCL would also be Joint Venture partners. Cabinet also constituted an Inter Ministerial Committee (IMC) to oversee the revival process. A Joint Venture company in the name of ‘Hindustan Urvarak & Rasayan Limited (HURL)’ has been incorporated for the purpose of revival. HURL has started construction of plant at both the places, namely, at Sindri & Gorakhpur. Concession Agreements as well as Lease Deeds have been signed between FCIL & HURL for Sindri & Gorakhpur Projects. Substitution Agreements for Gorakhpur & Sindri Units have also been signed amongst FCIL, HURL & Lenders’ Representative. Both the projects would get gas from the GAIL Gas pipeline from Jagdishpur (Uttar Pradesh) to Haldia (West Bengal).
4.4 Korba unit
The revival of Korba unit would be taken up later on.