The state government has already committed about 30mn reais for the project, and the federal government is likely to provide 20mn reais, he said. The remaining 50mn reais is being sought from a number of national and international funds, a Japanese fund, and possibly some of the royalties paid by Brazil's federal energy company Petrobras on natural gas production in the north of the state, currently totaling around 17mn reais a month, he said.
Adese recently completed a feasibility study together with the state industries federation, Fiern, which was presented to state governor Wilma de Faria, of the Brazilian Socialist Party (PSB). The project is ready to be tendered, Macedo said, adding that Adese hopes to get this process off the ground by mid-June. The 310km, 6-inch diameter pipeline would run from the existing Gasfor pipeline at Vale do Assu to Jucurutu, from where it would branch north to Caico and Parelhas and south to Currais Novos. It would supply about 500,000 cu. m a day to the Seridó region of southern Rio Grande do Norte state, where the local ceramics industry is consuming vast amounts of wood from an area that already has major desertification problems, Macedo explained. Natural gas would substitute the wood-fired kilns, and would also attract new industries to the region, such as food preparation and mining companies, he said. Gasfor is the main pipeline in the northeast that runs from natural gas fields in Guamari, Rio Grande do Norte state, to Fortaleza in Ceara state.
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