Government would decide on whether to increase the supply of natural gas to power sector by diverting a part of the existing supply to fertiliser sector.
Fertiliser plants in India get 43.6 mscmd of natural gas at present. Of this, 19.5 per cent (8.5 mscmd) comes from imported liquefied natural gas (LNG).
Some reports indicate that the fertiliser plants may have to import 45-50 per cent of their total gas requirement if the government decides to divert 10 mscmd of its allocation to power.
The diversion of 10 mscmd KG-D6 gas from fertiliser sector would also result in reduction of five million tonne of domestic urea production.
Out of the total 43.6 mmscmd for fertilizers, 12.6 mmscmd comes from APM gas, 14.4 mmscmd from Reliance Industries (RIL) and another 2.7 mmscmd from ONGC's non-APM fields. At the same time, the shortfall of gas for the sector is around 4.96 mmscmd.
A major draw back occurred because of the drop in RIL’s KG-D6 gas. The priority-basis was first for existing gas-based urea plants, LPG units, power plants lying idle, city gas distribution projects and if remains for existing gas based power plants.
Owing to the decline in the production of natural gas at RIL's KG-D6 basin from 61 mmscmd in 2010 to 15 mmscmd recently, about 25 power plants are starving for gas.