Bharat to Build Another Blending Plant


Bharat to Build Another Blending Plant
A Bharat Petroleum products truck on an interurban road in Jaipur, India. © Art Konovalov

In a nod to India’s growing lubricant market, Bharat Petroleum Corp. Ltd. said this week that it will construct a new finished lubricant blending plant in Rasayani, Maharashtra state, an industrial town approximately 50 kilometers southeast of Mumbai.

Including base oil storage and pipeline facilities, the state-owned energy conglomerate said it will spend Rs 2,753 crore (Rs 27.5 billion or U.S. $332.2 million) on the project.

The company did not disclose a schedule for the project nor the capacity of the blending plant, which would be its fifth. The plans were unveiled in Bharat’s announcement of a Rs 49,000 crore project to expand and add chemicals production to the company’s oil refinery in Bina Etawa, Madhya Pradesh, in north central India.

In a May 17 news release, Bharat said the Rasayani project aims to aims to “augment storage capacity, smooth the supply chain and streamline the distribution of essential petroleum products.”

India is the world’s third-largest finished lubricant market – behind the United States and China – and is forecast to continue growing in coming years. The leading suppliers are state-owned oil companies, including Bharat, which have long benefitted from tie-ups to other large state-owned industries.

Bharat markets lubes under its Mak brand and currently manufactures them at: its Wadilube plant in Mumbai, which has capacity to make 203,000 metric tons of lubricants per year; the Budge Budge plant on the outskirts of Kolkata, which has capacity of 30,000 t/y; a 42,000 t/y plant in Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh; and a plant in Chennai. The company describes the latter as its second-largest blending plant but does not list its capacity.