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Nagpur: Government is planning to set up a pilot project to produce urea from coal in Odisha soon, Union Minister of State for Chemicals and Fertilisers Hansraj Ahir said here today.

The Minister said India imports urea from China, where it is produced from coal using a German technology.

"We have a lot of coal reserves. So, we can also produce gas from coal and convert it further to urea. A team of officials is going to visit China to study the process.

After this, we are planning to start a pilot project in Odisha," he said.

Emphasising that his Ministry has an important role to play in the Prime Minister's 'Make in India' initiative, Ahir said it had two specific targets: reduction of imports of fertilisers and chemicals and reduction of subsidy in fertiliser sector.

Ahir, who represents neighbouring Chandrapur district in the Lok Sabha, also said the government is making a comprehensive list of life-saving medicines and is planning to subsidise some high-cost medicines for cardiac diseases.

The government was also planning to start generic medical shops. Three thousand such shops would be set up in the first phase and a meeting of state officials had been scheduled in this regard for January 12, he said.

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