Bottlers get NOC nod to acquire gas bulletsThe Nepal Oil Corporation (NOC) has given a go-ahead to the private gas bottling companies to acquire bullets for transporting cooking gas which could save over Rs3 billion in annual transportation cost.
The Nepal Oil Corporation (NOC) has given a go-ahead to the private gas bottling companies to acquire bullets for transporting cooking gas which could save over Rs3 billion in annual transportation cost.
A total 53 Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) bottling plants operate in the country. At present, neither the NOC nor private companies possesses LPG bullet, leaving Nepal at mercy of Indian transporters for shipment of cooking gas.
Mukunda Ghimire, director at the NOC, said they had written to the Nepal LP Gas Industry Association to initiate a process to purchase gas bullets. “We have allowed them to purchase a total 450 bullets,” he said.
According to the NOC, 523 bullets belonging to seven Indian shipping companies are
being used to transport LPG
from Indian Oil Corporation’s depots in Barauni, Haldiya and Mathura to Nepal.
These shipping companies have been taking home more than Rs3 billion in freight charges annually. According to LPG bottlers, the Indian bullet operators charge extra if it takes more than 72 hours to ship fuel from India to the gas bottling plants in Nepal.
Shiva Ghimire, president of the association, said they received the NOC approval to purchase or manufacture the gas bullets. “We will be providing a specified quota to the gas industries to acquire the number of LPG bullets,” he said. According to the association, it has set standards to offer the quota to the individual companies. “The quota of gas bullets for an individual company will be determined on the basis of the refilling capacity of the factory, distance from the Indian refinery and factory’s location conducts their businesses,” said Ghimire.
The bottling plants have sought facilities—similar to the ones currently being provided to other domestic manufactures—for gas bullet assembly plants. The domestic manufacturers can import required logistics at 4 percent customs.
Ghimire said they were holding talks with Finance Ministry, Industry Ministry and Supply Ministry on the matter. He added that they were planning to purchase manufacturing logistics from Indian companies. The cost for a bullet is estimated at anywhere between Rs6.5-7 million. A bullet has the capacity of 18 tonnes of cooking gas.