Reliance signs shipping agreement for ethane imports

Mumbai - Reliance Industries Ltd on Wednesday said it had signed a long-term shipping agreement with Japan`s Mitsui OSK Lines Ltd (MOL) to transport liquefied ethane that Reliance will import from North America.

MOL will supervise the construction of six very large ethane carriers (VLECs) ordered by Reliance and operate and manage the vessels after they are built and delivered, the Indian company said in a statement.

The VLECs are being built by Samsung Heavy Industries Co Ltd and are expected to be delivered in the last quarter of 2016, MOL said separately.

The companies did not disclose the value of the deal.

Reliance - controlled by Mukesh Ambani, India`s richest man - operates the world`s biggest refinery complex in a single location in western India.

The refiner said in August that it planned to import 1.5 million tonnes a year of ethane from the United States as feedstock for its crackers. PTI