Securing affordable, sustainable energy top agenda for India – Minister

NEW DELHI, India’s Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas Steel Dharmendra Pradhan on Thursday underlined the importance of securing affordable and sustainable energy for India.

The ministry of petroleum and natural gas quoted Pradhan as telling participants of a session on ‘Re-energizing India’ at the India Economic Summit in New Delhi that securing affordable and sustainable energy figures is a top agenda for India and most of the south Asian countries.

“Today, we are meeting in the backdrop of a major oil and gas crisis, resulting from attacks on Saudi oil processing plants at Abqaiq and Khurais. “The price volatility and concerns about sustained oil supplies have made consuming countries vulnerable given the fact that India, along with most South Asian countries, have a major dependency on crude oil and gas imports. So securing affordable and sustainable energy figures as a top agenda for all these countries, including India,” the minister said. He also underlined the importance that developments in Indian energy sector is accorded by the global energy deliberations due to the emergence of India as third-largest energy consumer in the world.

The Indian minister also highlighted the huge annual energy demand until 2035. “As we seek to transform India into a five trillion dollar economy, it is imperative to increase energy availability to 1.3 billion people, whose per capita energy consumption is lower than the global average. The energy demand, thus, is estimated to grow at 4.2 percent per annum up to 2035,” he said.

He added that India will be guided by four pillars of energy access, energy efficiency, energy sustainability and energy security in its approach to re-energize India. Pradhan also hailed Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government’s initiatives to develop mutually beneficial energy corridors with other South Asian countries especially the India-Nepal Petroleum Products Pipeline and partnership with Maldives in changing over to energy efficient LED bulbs. “There is a definite need for integrating energy sources be it petroleum products, LPG or LNG in South Asia through regional electricity and gas grids. We are also working to reduce the carbon footprints by transfer of hydropower from Nepal and Bhutan to India, and to the countries in the region,” the minister said. He underlined the government’s shift towards a gas economy, saying over 16,000 km of gas pipeline has been built and an additional 11,000 km is under construction. India’s leading role in embracing renewable energy sources globally was underlined and the establishment of International Solar Alliance was shown as a victory of New Delhi’s energy diplomacy. The two-days India Economic Summit is organised by the World Economic Forum in cooperation with the Indian Ministry of Commerce and Industry and the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).

The summit aims at highlighting India’s role as a global economic player and how it is transforming itself and the world around it. Apart from the investment opportunity in the country, the summit is expected to highlight India as a growing geo-economic and geopolitical power.

Source: Kuwait News Agency