Chennai-based Ramco Cements on Friday said that it had decided to set up a 3.15-million tonne greenfield in Andhra Pradesh with an investment of about Rs 1,500 crore. The company also announced clinker capacity expansion project at its Jayanthipuram plant in Krishna district from 3.10 million tonne per annum (MTPA) to 4.60 million tonne per annum with an estimated investment of Rs 740 crore. Overall, the company is targeting 20 MTPA by 2020 from the existing 12.50 MTPA and will be the largest cement producer in Andhra Pradesh with 10 MTPA capacity alone. The company, including above the projects, has earmarked Rs 3,430 crore to be spent over next two years. Anticipating a sharp pickup in demand, particularly in the southern markets in the coming months as well as part of its long-term plan to be a major player in the southern region, Ramco will be setting up a 3.15 MTPA at Kalavatala, Kolimigundla Mandal, in Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh. State chief minister Chandrababu Naidu laid the foundation stone for the same. The environment clearance has been obtained for the proposed plant and the required mining lease for the plant is in place. The substantial portion of land required for the plant has already been acquired by the company and the state government has consented to allot the remaining required land. This will be the modern plant with no-emission and no-effluent discharge and it will be one of the model cement plant with the least thermal and electrical energy consumption, the company said. The plant will have the Waste Heat Recovery System (WHRS) and thermal power plant for its energy requirement. It is proposed to establish a 25-km railway line from Sanjamala station to the plant. This cement plant is expected to be completed within 15 months from the date of all requisite statutory clearances. This project is expected to generate direct employment of 300 people and indirect job of around 1,000. The firm is also planning to build a township for their employees in the proposed cement plant. Apart from this, the company proposes to expand its clinker capacity from 3.10 MTPA to 4.60 MTPA along with WHRS of 27 megawatt (MW) at its Jayanthipuram plant in Krishna district at Rs 740 crore. This project is expected to be commissioned in March 2020. The company is also expanding its grinding capacity at Visakhapatnam by another 1 MTPA with the investment of Rs 250 crore for increasing it from 0.9 MTPA to 2 MTPA. It is expected to be commissioned in March 2020. With the above investments, the capacity in Andhra Pradesh would come close to 10 MTPA, making the company the largest cement manufacturer in the state. In addition to these investments in Andhra, the firm is also expanding its grinding capacities in eastern states such as Odisha and West Bengal. In Odisha, the firm is establishing a greenfield grinding plant with 0.9 MTPA capacity at `515 crore with railway siding unit. This is expected to be commissioned by September 2019. The firm is also expanding capacity in Kolaghat, East Midnapore district, West Bengal, from 0.9 MTPA to 2 MTPA at `425 crore with railway siding facility.