Pratim Ranjan Bose, Business Line, 25/8/11
Having set foot in Egypt in the last fiscal, Rs 1,700-crore Dhunseri Petrochem and Tea Ltd (DPTL) is mulling expansion of its downstream petrochemicals business in the North African country.
Greenfield opportunities are also being explored in Europe.
“We are very seriously looking at Egypt,” the executive chairman, Mr C.K. Dhanuka, told Business Line. The company is aiming at a four-fold increase in turnover to Rs 7,000 crore by 2013-14.
Though he stressed that the company was committed to commission its greenfield PET resin facility at Ain El Sokhna (approximately 100 km from Cairo) before embarking on fresh projects, Mr Dhanuka was categorical that the company had more plans in store for the African destination.
“Egypt is strategically located to cater to the markets in Europe, Africa and the US. This coupled with the low cost of energy, approximately half when compared with India, makes it an attractive production base. Naturally, DTPL’s future expansion will be in Egypt,” he said.
DPTL, through its 70 per cent subsidiary Egyptian Indian Polyester Company S.A.E (EIPET), is setting up a 430,000-tonne facility at the deep-sea port town on Red Sea. The estimated $159-million (over Rs 700 crore at current exchange rate) project had suffered minor delays during the civil unrest in Egypt and is now expected to be on stream in the first quarter of 2013.
The company had recently bid for a project in a West European nation. The attempt, however, was not successful. “We are open to greenfield opportunities in Europe,” Mr Dhanuka said.
The Rs 370-crore capacity expansion at DTPL’s PET Resin facility to 410,000 tonne at Haldia in West Bengal is scheduled to be complete this fiscal. Depending on the market conditions, the capacity may be expanded by 200,000 tonnes.
Having acquired a number of bought-leaf factories in the recent past, the company is aiming to double the size of its tea business to 20 million kg in 2012-13.