APMT Pipavav starts VLGC operations
APM Terminals Pipavav (GPPL – Gujarat Pipavav Port) commenced very large gas carrier (VLGC) operations with the maiden berthing of MT Jag Viraat, owned by Great Eastern Shipping, earlier this month.
The VLGC vessel MT Jag Viraat loaded cargo from Ruwais, ADNOC Refinery Jetty, and discharged 21,907 MT parcel at port Pipavav for three public sector undertakings (PSUs) – Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited, Indian Oil Corporation Limited, and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited.
The berthing marks the establishment of a strategic gateway for LPG imports amid a major shift in All-India LPG imports to VLGC vessels from earlier medium gas carriers.
The demand for LPG is increasing as Indian households are shifting to LPG as household fuel thanks to the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojna. The social welfare scheme was launched by the Government of India in 2016 with the aim of enabling households to replace traditional cooking fuels such as wood, coal, and cow dung with LPG cylinders.
The milestone is being reported on the back of a $90 million investment announcement related to a new liquid berth that aims to increase the port’s liquid bulk handling capacity from 2 MMT to 5.2 MMT.
The development of the dedicated VLGC-compliant LPG berth is expected to be ready by 2025, along with the expansion of the LPG Terminal capacity by its terminal partner, Aegis Vopak Terminal Limited.
The introduction of the VLGC-compliant berth facility will help bringing in large vessels with larger parcel size to get economy of scale.
The expanded terminal capacity is set to handle up to 3.20 million MT, further bolstering APM Terminals Pipavav’s capabilities in handling LPG imports.