Asia Pulp & Paper (APP) has announced that it is developing a 5 million tonne per annum, greenfield pulp and paper plant in the Prakasam district of Andhra Pradesh in India.
The firm has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Andhra Pradesh Economic Development Board (APEDB), to develop this plant.
This MoU was signed by APEDB chief executive J.Krishna Kishore and Asia Pulp & Paper executive director Suresh Kilam, in the company of Andhra Pradesh chief minister N. Chandrababu Naidu.
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APEDB is responsible for the sustainable economic growth through trade, investment, partnerships and collaborations in the state of Andhra Pradesh.
Through the MoU, APP will set up a greenfield pulp and paper manufacturing unit for pulp, paper and board, subject to regulatory approvals.
The total investment of the plant is INR 24,000 Crores (£2.6 billion), making it one of the largest Foreign-Direct Investments (FDI) in the country to date.
This project will be split into two phases, and is estimated to provide direct employment to 4,000 workers, and indirect employment to around 12,000 workers, said APP.
The project is also expected to provide a better income for over 50,000 pulpwood farmers in the region.
According to APP, the greenfield project will produce an indirect employment in ancillary services, including logistics providers for inbound and outbound transport of raw materials and finished products, maintenance providers for the plant, waste paper suppliers, chemical suppliers, converters and distributors.
It is hoped that it will ensure a marked improvement across the value chain of the Indian paper industry.
The new plant will also provide a boost to surrounding areas such as Nellore, Guntur, Kadapa and Kurnool, through a sustained plantation income and improved access to education, infrastructure, transportation, and healthcare.
Andhra Pradesh was chosen due to support form the State Government, availability of quality land parcels and water, proximity to raw materials and a streamlined infrastructure.
APEDB chief executive J Krishna Kishore said: “This investment of USD 3.5 billion makes it one of India’s biggest FDI and one of the world’s biggest pulp and paper manufacturing plant, putting Prakasam and Andhra Pradesh on the world map. The APEDB is delighted to have facilitated this key investment in Andhra Pradesh and we are proud of this investment both in terms of vision and its quality.”
Andhra Pradesh chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu said: “APP’s decision to invest in Andhra Pradesh is a clear testament to our Government’s efforts at attracting investments and confirms higher levels of satisfaction and confidence on our business environment, from international investors.
“This investment would not only create thousands of jobs and opportunities for farmers, but will help in upliftment of society, creation of better infrastructure, increased market linkages and overall development and happiness among the people of Prakasam, Nellore, Srikakulam and other areas in Andhra Pradesh.”
APP executive director Suresh Kilam said: “As India continues to rapidly develop, demand for pulp and paper products will grow to keep pace. It is vital that we meet this demand in a sustainable and socially responsible way. In developing the Ramayapatnam mill, APP will draw heavily on our forestry expertise in Indonesia to ensure that we continue to meet all our commitments under our Forest Conservation Policy.”
“Andhra Pradesh offers a robust pro-growth, pro-investment ecosystem with good logistical capabilities and access to sustainable pulpwood plantations. We are grateful for the continued assistance from the State Government, in particular, the APEDB, in realising this project.”
Chinese company Nine Dragons Paper has also announced that it is building a paper mill in Raigad in India and is expected to open its first phase in 2022.