MUMBAI: Union Minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday said it is time for the country to go for alternative fuel sources such as ethanol, methanol and bio-diesel.
He was speaking at the inauguration of India Chem 2018 - the 10th Biennial International Exhibitions and Conference - Chemical and Petrochemicals - Advantage India here.
Stressing on the importance of alternative fuels, the Minister said ethanol is the future and government has decided to increase its production.
The Cabinet has given the approval to finance ethanol factories. The Minister said the country needs to reduce its imports and increase exports and new initiatives for import substitution are very important and need to be supported.
He said India is the fastest growing large economy and those investing in India will have a huge advantage.
He cited the vast reserve of minerals and manpower available as two strengths of India.
Mr Gadkari said India is doing well in technology, entrepreneurship, innovation and R&D and that a lot of new research is happening through which India can work miracles in the world.
''Particularly in petrochemicals, India has huge potential but we need to be cost-effective and pollution-free,'' said the Minister.
He spoke of the need for transparency, investment and at the same time encouragement of exports.
Speaking about the importance of diversification in agriculture towards the needs of the energy and power sector, Mr Gadkari said new crops have to be identified.
The Minister exhorted the industry to explore the possibility of using an agricultural material for making chemicals, which he said can be a great game changer for the country.
The Minister spoke of the importance of ecology and environment and highlighted that bio-plastics can be made from ethanol.
Organic plastics can give a new vision for the petrochemicals industry, he said. On the occasion, the Minister released India Chem 2018 knowledge paper.