Awareness drive planned toallay fears over PCPIR
The Visakhapatnam-Kakinada Petroleum, Chemical and Petrochemicals Investment Region Special Development Authority will soon organise awareness ‘sadassus’ (conventions) to allay misapprehensions among people on the proposed industrial corridor.
Following mounting criticism from various quarters, including a section of ruling party MLAs and ZPTC members, the State government, after putting off the public hearing, which was to be held on December 18, has decided to clear the doubts over land acquisition and risks involved in setting up chemical units.
Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu, during his recent visit to the city, was emphatic in stating that they would not take up any project without the mandate of the people.
The PCPIR project has been hanging fire for the past several years due to delay in finalisation of the master plan and failure to get anchor tenants. Sources in the APIIC say that HPCL has now shown interest in setting up a mega refinery with an investment of $15 billion for which it is holding talks with GAIL.
GMR Group has also stated that it is scouting for a partner to set up a 15-million tonne Greenfield refinery at Kakinada Special Economic Zone.
Petronet LNG Limited has already obtained clearances for its 10-million tonne LNG terminal at Gangavaram Port with an investment of Rs.9,000 crore in two phases.
Mr. Naidu has also hinted at developing a parallel beach road from Bheemunipatnam to Kakinada and linking it to the highway to woo investors on both sides of the road.
The PCPIR, over a period of 10 years, is expected to attract an investment of Rs.3,43,000 crore. The State government has already declared that it will spend Rs.19,159 crore on developing internal roads and other infrastructure.
On the other hand, it is expecting the Centre to invest $1.3 billion on augmenting logistics. The PCPIR will have a total area of 603.89 square km in parts of Visakhapatnam and Kakinada districts.
“The government has to honour the public sentiment and go ahead with the project only after obtaining a mandate for it at the gram sabha,” PCPIR Vyatireka Porata Samiti member M. Appalaraju has said.