The nation would become self-sufficient in energy by 2030, said Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas M Veerappa Moily. He was speaking at the foundation stone laying ceremony of the Integrated Refinery Expansion Project (IREP) here on Monday. The new gas policy is aimed at achieving self-sufficiency, he said.
“The policy would be carried out in a phased manner. By the end of the first phase, comprising 6 years, there will be a 50 per cent reduction in the import of gas. Then there would be another phase,” he said. According to the assessment of international agencies, there would be an estimated investment of 600 billion dollars in the energy sector in 20 years.
Moily also stressed on the significance of environment-friendly energy resources like LNG. On the completion of the IREP, the capacity of the refinery would increase from 9.5 to 15.5 million metric tonnes per annum.
The project is expected to contribute towards energy security by enhancing the supply of valuable petroleum fuels. The expansion project, with an investment of `20,000 crore, will have a multiplier effect. By 2017, a total of 31,757 kms of gas pipelines would be laid throughout the country. The GAIL pipeline network between Kochi and Mangalore would open up great avenues for the development of industries, he added.
Earlier, Prime Minister had pointed out that with a refining capacity of 215 million metric tonnes per annum, India would not only be self-sufficient in petroleum products, but also make substantial exports. During 2011-12, the country exported 60.8 million metric tons of petroleum products worth Rs 2.85 lakh crore, resulting in petroleum products becoming the single largest export merchandise.