Germany’s Linde Group mulls $ 200 mn investment in AP

The Linde Group of Germany is planning to invest over USD 200 million(about Rs 1,300 crores) in Andhra Pradesh in fisheries-related areas.

The Group’s Chief Executive Officer Wolfgang Buchele, Member of Executive Board Sanjiv Lamba and other company officials met Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu here yesterday and expressed interest in working with the state in freezing of sea food, an official release said.

Andhra Pradesh is one of the top states in fisheries production in the country.

During the meeting, Buchele explained Linde’s expertise in cryogenic freezing of food, international gases market and engineering expertise in supporting olefin plants, natural gas plants and air separation plants, as well as hydrogen and synthesis gas plants.

He said the company has a base in Gujarat and is looking for a strong base in Andhra Pradesh.

“Andhra Pradesh has a long coast and has strong production of sea food. We want to support you in freezing of sea food and add value to exports. We are looking to invest over USD 200 million,” a state government release quoted him as saying.

Lamba said the Group is also interested in Petroleum, Chemical and Petrochemicals Investment Region (PCPIR), proposed to come up in AP, and auto components.

He said the company is also interested to set up an air-circulation plant, a lab and an academy that will train personnel required for supporting food processing.

“This will help us create a self-sustained supply chain around which ancillary industries will mushroom,” he added.

Naidu explained the advantages of Andhra Pradesh and said the state government is planning to make it the logistics hub of South East Asia.

“You can send your team to study the agriculture and allied activities in the state and identify business opportunities,” the CM said.

Highlighting that Andhra Pradesh has highest fisheries production, the Chief Minister asked the Group to begin work phase-wise.

“First, you can begin with freezing sea food, then move to freezing fruits,” Naidu said.

The Linde Group can also work with Andhra Pradesh on cold storage facilities in 13 food parks that are coming up across the state, he said.

“You can begin working with Fisheries Development Corporation. Work on an action plan and submit a report within four weeks,” the Chief Minister added.