Dispur launches policy to promote ethanol Production in Assam
With an aim to increase the usage of biofuel in the energy and transportation sectors
GUWAHATI: With an aim to increase the usage of biofuel in the energy and transportation sectors, Dispur has launched the 'Assam Ethanol Production Promotion Policy-2021'. This development has made Assam the second State in the country to bring out an ethanol production promotion policy.
Addressing a press conference here on Thursday, Industries & Commerce Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary said that the State Cabinet had approved the Policy on August 4, adding that the Policy will remain valid up to March 31, 2026.
Patowary added that the Union Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas formulated the 'National Policy on Biofuels-2018' with an aim to increase the usage of biofuel in the energy and transformation sector. He also said that the objectives of the policy focuses on extending incentives for the production of ethanol from all feedstocks permitted under 'NBP-2018'.
The policy will offer fiscal benefits and provide an enabling environment for the promotion and investment in fuel-grade standalone green-field ethanol manufacturing units by facilitating and financially incentivizing potential investors.
The other objectives of the policy are to increase in income of farmers producing feed-stock/raw materials for use in ethanol manufacturing and creation of local employment opportunities through promotion of the new ethanol units.
Patowary said the standalone green-field ethanol producing industrial units will be provided incentives under the policy.
The Industries & Commerce Department, will be the Nodal Department responsible for implementation of this policy. Incentives under this policy will be processed as per the provisions of the Industrial and Investment Policy of Assam, 2019, and the Operational Guidelines to be announced for that Policy.
A press communiqué issued by the Industries & Commerce department on Thursday stated Assam has four refineries and produces huge amount of petrol and diesel, which ensures viability and promise for ethanol projects in the State. In this regard, IOCL (Indian Oil Corporation Ltd), which has been importing ethanol for its blending programme, is contemplating setting up a captive ethanol plant.
The release said the NRL (Numaligarh Refinery Ltd), set up, as part of Assam Accord and wherein Assam Government has recently raised its share to 26%, is undertaking a JV project with 2 European companies to set up a bio refinery near its existing refinery in Numaligarh which on being commissioned in 2022-23 shall convert 300,000 tonnes of dry bamboo annually into bio-ethanol and other biofuels.
"NRL has a 50% stake in the INR 2600 crore project. Ethanol imports reached a record 750 million litres in 2019, covering over 30% of its total demand. Domestic ethanol production can attenuate the import graph, and the Ethanol Policy of Assam can go a long way in fulfilling that role," said the Industries & Commerce department.