Pipes arrive en masse for vital oil pipeline

  • amlekhgunj oil pipeline
- SHANKAR ACHARYA, PARSA

Mar 22, 2018-

Steel pipes required to build a major stretch of the planned Amlekhgunj-Raxaul-Motihari oil pipeline project arrived in Birgunj via the Birgunj border point.

Information officer of Birgunj Customs Office Santosh Yadav said that the pipes will combine to cover nearly 31.3km of the 37.2km-long oil pipeline project.

“Altogether Rs250 million worth of pipes have been imported and more pipes are being brought in every day.” Pipes for the remaining section of the pipeline, over 6 km, remain to be imported.

The petroleum pipeline project stretches from Motihari in India to Amlekhgunj in Bara district via Birgunj Customs, Gandak, Simara and Pathlaiya. About 35 km of the total pipeline falls in the territory of Nepal.

The Government of Nepal has labelled the Amlekhgunj-Raxaul-Motihari cross-border oil pipeline a national priority project. Although the scheme was first proposed in 1995, the project gathered momentum only after the governments of Nepal and India signed an agreement in August 2015 to build it. 

The pipes are manufactured from black steel by Simlesh Limited, a company based in Maharastra, India. 

The pipeline will have a diameter of 10.75 inches (27.3 cm) with an estimated life span of 30 years. 

Indian Oil Corporation, the agency tasked with constructing the petroleum pipeline project, brought these pipes to Birgunj. Construction materials for the pipeline project are being stored at the premises of Birgunj Sugar Factory.

Construction of Amlekhgunj-Raxaul-Motihari oil pipeline project began two weeks ago at Simara. The project is estimated to complete within a year and a half.

According to the bilateral agreement of Nepal and India, construction materials used for the pipeline project  will not be charged custom duties at the border points of the two countries. 

The bilateral agreement stipulates that India will contribute Rs3.2 million of the total estimated cost of Rs4.2 billion while Nepal will invest the rest of the expenses for constructing this pipeline project.

After construction of this oil pipeline, traffic snarls and congestion at Birgunj border point is expected to reduce significantly. Majority of the oil tankers pass through the border point.

Likewise, traffic pressure due to oil tankers in Birgunj-Pathlaiya-Amlekhgunj section of Tribhuvan Highway would also be eased. The project is also believed to ensure regular supply of petroleum products in the country.

Published: 22-03-2018 08:45

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