The Amlekhgunj-Raxaul-Motihari oil pipeline may begin soon as steel pipes needed for the pipeline have started to arrive in Birgunj.
- Half a dozen vehicles loaded with steel pipes were cleared through custom in Birjung last Tuesday. The next shipments are to arrive soon.
- Santosh Yadav, information officer at the Birgunj Customs Office said that these pipes were ordered by Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), the authorized agency for the construction of the pipeline.
- No import duty was collected on these pipes as stated by the agreement between Nepal and India. According to this agreement, construction materials imported for the pipeline project will not be charged customs duties and fees.
By the numbers:
- Yadav informed that the Birgunj Customs has been instructed to clear 2,724.23 metres of pipes worth (Indian Rupees) INR 16.6 million. In this lot, pipes worth INR 12.96 million were cleared through customs.
- The pipes for this project have been manufactured specially with a diameter of 10.75 inches. Their lifespan is estimated to be 30 years.
- The Amlekhgunj-Raxaul cross-border oil pipeline was first proposed in 1995 but it was only finalized in August 2015.
- Since then, the project has been stalled due to delays in conducting a detailed engineering survey, acquiring land and calling for tenders. Nepal is yet to compete land acquisition and an environmental impact assessment (EIA), among other tasks like clearing the land, relocating settlers and shifting electricity poles.
Total Cost of the Project:
- The project is estimated to cost Rs. 4.4 billion. India will contribute Rs. 3.2 billion while Nepal will pick up the rest of the expenses.