Bhutan-India cement venture may be revived

Bhutan-India cement venture may be revived
Published: 01 February 2004

Improved security could shortly see a revival of the Dungsam Cement Project [DCP] in Nganglam, Samdrup Jongkhar, first mooted some 20 years ago. "The DCP is an important project not only because it is economically viable but because it could lead Dungsam to a nucleus growth centre for southeast Bhutan," he said. "Development of the DCP will have a far-reaching socio-economic impact on the people of Pemagatshel and Samdrup Jongkhar dzongkhags." said the trade and industry minister, Lyonpo Yeshey Zimba

The Dungsam Cement Project was first conceived in the 1980s after the Geological Survey of India found vast limestone deposits at the confluence of the Kuring and Marung rivers in the Nganglam region in 1964. In 1980 the Bhutanese government decided to establish a cement project, and development of the area began in 1982. In March 1985, the first detailed feasibility report on the project was drawn up by the Cement Corporation of India (CCI).

Project, technical and environmental reports, apparently costing more than US$16.5m to complete, suggest a good market in northeast India made the project economically viable.  The government of India had also agreed on the construction of a road and railway siding for the project. With the completion of the Kurichu Hydroelectric Project Corporation (KHPC) in Gyalpoizhing, the region has a good supply of electricity with the Nganglam-Tingtibi transmission line from KHPC.