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Nandan to set up eco-zones for bio-fuel

Publication: Business Standard
Date: May 9, 2008

BS Reporter Hyderabad Nandan Biomatrix, a Hyderabad-based agri-biotechnology and medicinal plantation company, is planning to set up bioinvestment eco-industrial zones (BIEZs) across the country. The project aims to bring fallow land under jatropha cultivation, which will be used to make biofuel.
B Jaya Kumar, director (technical), said, “BIEZs would work to achieve energy efficiency. The zones will have farms and laboratories for mass production of plantlets along with nursery production centres, demonstration areas and training centres. It will follow the contract farming model, assuring farmers of buying jatropha seeds.
IL&FS Infrastructure Development Corporation, which is associated with the development of the project, is preparing a feasibility report. “We are hopeful of announcing a few BIEZs this year,” said Jaya Kumar, adding the company was targeting cultivation for biofuel on 100,000 hectares.
The project will be implemented on a public-private-panchayat partnership model. The model will be replicated abroad, too.
The input cost for jatropha cultivation is estimated at Rs 16,000 per acre spread over two years, with expected returns of Rs 12,000 from the third or fourth year of planting. Nandan Managing Director Bhaskar Rao signed a memorandum of understanding in this regard with Bharat Petroleum Corporation (BPCL), one of the stakeholders in the project.
“BPCL will procure the biofuel produced from the BIEZ and will set up refineries for blending requirements,” said AK Bansal, executive director (corporate affairs), BPCL.
Shapoorji Pallonji (SP), the Germany-based Alphakat and Malaysia’s Platinum Energy also have a stake in the project.

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