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Indian PTA & MEG may find way into Pakistan
18
Sep '12
Pakistan, with which India shares a common and long border, is the next important destination for Indian petrochemical exports. Current exports include polymer resins like polypropylene; however PTA and MEG could also find its way in to the neighbouring country.

Currently Indian Oil exports around 6,000 tons of polymers per month from its refinery in Panipat – Punjab, which is just 400 kms away from the border. The biggest private sector player – Reliance Industries Ltd too is exporting petrochemicals to Pakistan.

Speaking exclusively to fibre2fashion, a very senior official of Indian Oil, which is the biggest government-owned oil company in India said, “Indian Oil is exporting polymer products like polyethylene and polypropylene around 5000-6000 tons per month, while the actual Pakistani polymers market size is around .5 million tons per annum.

“Reliance Industries is also exporting petrochemicals to Pakistan through the Karachi Port, while we do it through road and rail through the Wagah border, which is just 400 Kms away from our refinery. The majority of our market is in Lahore, which is also just 30 kms away from the border”.

“We are also exporting filaments and fibres, but currently it is in limited quantities. They also have a requirement for PTA and MEG. However, since PTA bags weigh around 1,100 kgs, infrastructure has to be created at the Wagah border for these bags to be reloaded in to Pakistani trucks. However, we are confident of finding a solution”.  

Speaking about competition, he revealed, “We mainly face competition from countries in the Middle-East as these countries use gas to convert in to polymer resins, while we use naphtha to convert in to polymers, which makes us a little bit uncompetitive when competing with the Middle-East countries.”

Incidentally, Indian production of polypropylene outstrips demand by around 5 million tons per annum, whereas, the requirement in Pakistan is in the region of around 6 million tons. Considering the proximity, the neighbouring country could prove to be an important destination for the surplus. 

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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