May 22, 2018-Workers have finished laying 10 km out of the 69 km Amlekhgunj-Raxaul oil pipeline in the last two months.
The underground pipeline has a diameter of 10.75 in and will extend from Motihari, Bihar in India to Amlekhgunj in Nepal. The pumping facilities for the cross-border pipeline are located at Motihari.
Out of the pipeline’s total length, 32.7 km will lie in India and 36.2 km in Nepal. The design throughput capacity of the pipeline is 2 million tonnes per annum. The pipeline project is expected to cost IRs3.24 billion.
Sharad Prasad Poudyal, an engineer engaged in the pipeline project, said they had completed welding the pipes and laid them underground in a number of locations in Pathlaiya and Simara. “We have started construction work in the Birgunj area,” Poudyal said. According to Poudyal, the construction has been delayed in some locations like Parwanipur where a road expansion project is going on. “Similarly, the slow pace of relocating electricity poles in several other locations has been hampering the construction of the pipeline.”
A major section of the pipeline’s alignment lies along the Birgunj-Pathlaiya highway, which is being upgraded to six lanes. Poudyal said that the project would be completed in a year. “Based on the current rate of progress, most of the construction work is expected to be done before the monsoon in mid-June.”
Where the alignment crosses rivers, the pipeline will be laid beneath the riverbed. According to Poudyal, the pipeline is being laid at a depth of 2.5 metres underground.
Indian construction company Likhiya Infrastructures has been awarded the pipeline construction project with the completion deadline of 15 months.
Meanwhile, Moti Prabha Infra Tech, another Indian company based in Faridabad, has started upgrading four vertical fuel storage tanks at the Amlekhgunj depot of Nepal Oil Corporation (NOC). These tanks have a combined storage capacity of 13,400 kilolitres. Two of the tanks can hold 3,900 kilolitres each and the other two tanks can hold 1,500 kilolitres and 4,100 kilolitres respectively.
NOC is paying the compensation amount for the land used by the project. According to the project, the contractor has imported more than 31 km of pipes. Simlesh Limited of Maharashtra, India has manufactured the steel pipes being used in the project. The construction of the pipeline is expected to help ensure regular supply of petroleum products to Nepal besides reducing transportation costs and eliminating the vagaries of transportation by tanker truck.
Source : The Kathmandu Post