Capacity of Thankot depot to be boostedThe expansion plan will result in the capacity being increased to 6,000 kl, enough to fulfil the valley’s requirement for 20-25 days
Nepal Oil Corporation (NOC) has moved to expand the petrol storage capacity at its Thankot depot by 4,200 kilolitres. The state-owned oil monopoly called for global tenders to construct new facilities on Sunday. The Thankot depot serves the Kathmandu Valley and has a capacity to store 1,870 kilolitres of gasoline.
The expansion plan will result in the capacity being increased to 6,000 kilolitres, enough to fulfil the valley’s requirement for 20-25 days, the corporation said.
Spokesperson for NOC Mukunda Ghimire said they planned to expand the storage capacity to enable the enterprise to stock fuel for more than three weeks. The expansion project is expected to be completed within six months after the construction contract is awarded.
As per NOC’s notice, the corporation wants to install an aluminium internal floating roof system at each of the two existing storage tanks with a capacity of 2,100 kilolitres of kerosene.
“We are converting our existing kerosene tanks to store petrol due to a fall in demand for kerosene at present,” said Ghimire. Currently, NOC can store 5,100 kilolitres of petrol at its depots across the country. The stock is barely enough for two weeks.
According to NOC, demand for kerosene dropped massively after kerosene and diesel were priced the same.
The kerosene storage tanks have fixed roof systems which, according to the NOC officials, are unable to check evaporation loss. The planned aluminium internal floating roof is expected to prevent loss due to evaporation.
As petrol is volatile and easily evaporates at normal temperature, the kerosene storage tanks are not suitable for storing it, said NOC officials. According to them, the floating roof rises and falls with the level of petrol in the tank.
Potential bidders have been asked to submit their proposals by April 26 and NOC has planned to select the eligible candidate on April 27.
According to the NOC source, there are no domestic companies capable of installing such a roofing system. “Due to this reason, NOC is likely to offer the project to foreign companies.”
NOC acted to expand its storage capacity following criticism about its small stock of oil. The acute shortage of fuel following the Indian trade embargo has also been blamed on insufficient reserves.