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December 13-15, 2005
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Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA

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Posted on  

May 29, 2001

Indian Govt May Give Loans to Sugar Mills to Make By-products

New Delhi,-- India's sugar mills, saddled with stocks and reluctant to export at low prices, may get government loans to produce by-products such as power and ethanol that will help them lower costs and boost overseas sales.

``Millers should give importance to producing byproducts to lower their cost and compete in the international market,'' said Shanta Kumar, minister for consumer affairs and public distribution, in an interview.

Companies such as Balrampur Chini Mills Ltd., the biggest maker of the sweetener in the world's top sugar-producing nation, will benefit from long-term loans from the government's Sugar Development Fund at a cheaper-than-market rate, analysts said.

At present, the government doesn't lend money from the fund to sugar makers for activities such as power generation and the production of ethanol. The rules will be eased during the next session of parliament in July, the minister said.

Indian sugar makers can produce 5,000 megawatts of power in a year, the government estimates. That's 5 percent of the country's requirement of additional electricity by 2012.

Demand for ethanol may rise if India adapts the Brazilian method of mixing it with gasoline to conserve fossil fuels. Consumption of petroleum products in India is expected to expand more than a third between now and 2007. The government wants to reduce its dependence on oil imports, which made up 31 percent of the country's $50 billion import bill in the year ended March 31. 


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