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‘All stakeholders must work towards making India gas-based economy’

Dhamendra Pradhan has called upon all the stakeholders to contribute positively in transforming India into a gas-based economy
New Delhi: Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan has called upon all the stakeholders to contribute positively in transforming India into a gas-based economy. Presiding over a national conclave on emerging opportunities in the natural gas sector on Thursday, he said that the present share of gas in the energy basket of the country is 6.2 percent. And the target is to take it to 15 percent by 2030, Pradhan added. He said that the world average is 24 percent while within the country, Gujarat has 26 percent share of gas-based energy.

‘Policy thrust on gas-based economy’

Describing the natural gas as the next generation fossil fuel which is comparatively cheaper and less polluting, Pradhan said that the government has taken a number of initiatives to give a thrust to gas-based economy. He said that domestic gas production is likely to increase in the current financial year to 34.55 billion cubic metres. Pricing and LNG marketing freedoms have been given to gas producers, LNG terminal capacity is being augmented and national gas grid is being developed. Pradhan said that this is the first time that the government is providing Rs 10,500 crore worth of viability gap funding for laying pipeline in Eastern and North-Eastern India. He said that the gas pipeline network will be laid from Kutch to Kohima and Kashmir to Kochi. Pradhan said that Rs 4 lakh crore worth of investments are likely to be made in such projects, which is as much of a challenge as an opportunity. He said that the sources of import have been diversified and the government is holding discussions with gas-exporting countries for getting more gas on favourable terms. He said that CBG is a great initiative which has the potential to generate wealth from waste, provide employment, protect the environment, and give a boost to the economy.

Pradhan asks states to support gas infrastructure activities

Calling upon the states to fully cooperate and support the gas infrastructure activities and projects, he said that the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas has prepared a draft policy of City Gas Distribution (CGD), which may be adopted by states to facilitate such activities. Pradhan said that PNGRB is likely to soon start bids for round 11 for CGD and states may give suggestions in the identification of geographical areas. He also called upon states to adopt qualification packs developed by Hydrocarbon Sector Council in their Vocational Training Institutes and actively promote CNG usage in state transportation and mining sector.

CGD work must move forward swiftly: Pradhan

Pradhan called upon all the entities who have bagged CGD rounds to not delay their work and immediately start working and also asked PNGRB to strictly monitor the progress. The minister announced that the Federation of Indian Petroleum Industry (FIPI) will have a help desk for holding any future interaction with all stakeholders. He also assured full support to all the stakeholders who are part of the gas-based supply chain.