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Saudi Aramco to explore refinery possibility in Andhra

By Ians English

Vijayawada, Jan 18: Oil major Saudi Aramco will send a team to Andhra Pradesh in 15 days to explore the possibility of developing a refinery.

Chandrababu Naidu

After the team's visit, Andhra Pradesh will also send a team to Saudi Arabia for further discussions. This was decided during a meeting Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu held on Wednesday with Aramco President and Chief Executive Officer Amin H. Nasser in Davos, Switzerland.

According to a state government release here, Nasser and his team said that they are interested in starting a refinery in India and prefer collaboration with the government. Naidu said the possibility could be explored and informed them that land and water will be provided without any hitches. The Chief Minister also invited them to get involved in setting up a Petroleum University in the state.

He explained Andhra Pradesh's interest in petrochemicals, the potential in Krishna Godavari basin, the idea of Petroleum University, the technology and the skilled man force available in the state. On the third day of his visit to Davos, Naidu also met Vijay Shekhar Sharma, Chief Executive Officer, Paytm. Sharma said that he is keen on bringing every latest initiative of the Paytm to Andhra Pradesh.

The Paytm CEO mentioned that, starting a bank, 500 million accounts by 2020 and digital Paytm bank in every village are some of the targets the company has set. He also added that support will be extended to self-employed groups by giving small loans.

The Chief Minister suggested that a digital university should be started in a private-public partnership mode and that Andhra Pradesh will be a best partner to associate with. Naidu also met Shailendra Singh, Managing Director, Sequoia Capital, and discussed ways of collaboration.

Sequoia Capital is an American venture capital firm which mainly focuses on the technology industry. It started investing in India 11 years ago. The Chief Minister invited Sequoia Capital to invest in Andhra Pradesh too.

In a meeting with Fujitsu's Corporate Executive officer Nobuhiko Sasaki, Naidu explained the various technologies being used for development and welfare programmes in the state. He showed the core dashboard to Nobuhiko and explained how everything is monitored real time.

The Chief Minister enquired if they would provide sensors to collect data on soil moisture, and comprehensive devices for water level, pollution, wind speed and soil quality for increasing agricultural productivity. The representatives from Fujitsu said that they would send a team to Amaravati, the state's new capital city, to study Andhra Pradesh's requirements.


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