Thursday, 19 September 2019

Intervention by Dharmendra Pradhan, Minister of Petroleum & Natural Gas and Minister of Steel On ‘Advancing Inclusive Access to Secure, Affordable, and Sustainable Energy Services’

Updated: September 10, 2019 6:09 pm

H.E. Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury BirBikram, Adviser to the Prime Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Affairs, Bangladesh

H.E. Sontirat Sontijirawong, Minister of Energy, Thailand

H.E. Dato’ Seri Mohamed Azmin bin Ali, Minister of Economic Affairs, Malaysia

Ms. Rachel Kyte, CEO and Special Representative of the UN SecretaryGeneral, Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL)

Mr. Yury Sentyurin, Secretary General, Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF)

Excellencies, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen.

I am indeed happy to join this important session during the 8th Asian Ministerial Energy Roundtable 2019. The theme of this Session is of profound interest to India. In India, we have to improve availability of energy to over 1.3 billion people, whose per capita energy consumption is lower than the global average. This basic resource is extremely crucial to the overall socioeconomic development of the country. Now, India is the third-largest energy consumer in the world. The projected energy demand growth is 4.2 percent per annum up to 2035. This makes India’s energy demand growing faster than all major economies of the world. Our share of total global primary energy demand is set to double to 11% by 2040. We are preparing for such a growth path of energy demand in the country. This calls for making matching investments in the energy sector. India recorded the highest growth of foreign energy investments anywhere in the world, which touched US $85 billion.

Excellencies, Ladies & Gentlemen,

Prime Minister of India H.E. Mr. Narendra Modi, while inaugurating the Petrotech 2019 in New Delhi earlier this year, declared that “energy justice is also a key objective for me, and a top priority for India”. This encompasses a renewed commitment of India to advance inclusive access to secure, affordable and sustainable energy services. The Energy Vision of India, as enunciated by Prime Minister Modi in 2016, is based on four pillars i.e. energy access, energy efficiency, energy sustainability and energy security. As part of our integrated approach towards energy planning during the last five years, energy justice will be a key objective in itself. In this context, we are working towards the early realization of the UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 7. A number of transformative policies and initiatives have been taken in India to realize the above objectives. We are significantly expanding our energy infrastructure – be it power generation, more renewables and gas-based infrastructure -pipelines, city gas network, LNG terminals. We launched a major campaign to improve access to clean cooking fuel under the Ujjwala Yojana scheme three years back. I am happy to inform that the Prime Minister of India Mr Narendra Modi handed over the 80 millionth LPG connection couple of days back. A ‘Blue Flame Revolution’ is underway. LPG coverage has reached more than ninety percent from fifty-five percent five years ago. India attained universal electrification all villages. This year, India aims to achieve hundred per cent electrification of households, through a targeted programme called SAUBHAGYA.

 

In World Bank Ease of Getting Electricity ranking, India improved its ranking from 111 in 2014 to 29 in 2018. As part of a national drive under UJALA scheme, LED bulbs have been distributed across the country resulting in an annual saving of nearly $2.5 billion. Clean transportation is another area of high priority in India. We are jumping directly from BS-VI to BS-VI fuel by April 2020. This is the equivalent of EURO-VI standards. India is moving towards a gas-based economy by increasing the share of gas from 6% to 15% in the energy mix by 2030. We have constructed over 16,000 km of gas pipeline and an additional 11,000 km is under construction. We have covered over four hundred districts and 70 percent of our population. There is already a cardinal shift to renewable energy sources. Our target is 175 GW by 2022, with solar target of 100 GW by 2022. We are well on our way to achieve this target. We are promoting alternative fuels like ethanol and bio-diesel in a big way. A National Bio-Fuel Policy 2018 was unveiled targeting 20% blending of ethanol in petrol and 5% blending of bio-diesel in diesel by 2030. I am happy to share that India joined the elite group of nations in August 2018 to operate a flight running on biofuel. The addition of renewable sources of energy is complementing nonrenewable sources like natural gas to address the energy security, energy poverty and environmental challenges of our country. Let me conclude by stating that India is well on its way to meet its commitments under UN SDG 7. India’s success in the recent initiatives gave us confidence to further expedite other initiatives aimed at promoting access to energy in an affordable, secure and sustainable manner.

I thank you.

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