India will see $58 billion worth of investment in oil and gas production; Chevron, Exxon eager to invest: Minister

Hardeep Singh Puri said the world is facing the crisis of 3Fs – “Food, Fuel and Fertilizer”. (file)

New Delhi:

Oil Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said on Friday that India will likely see $58 billion in investment in the search for and production of oil and gas resources by 2023, adding that major global energy companies Chevron, Exxon Mobil and Total Energy are keen to invest.

India, the world’s third largest oil consumer and importer, is looking to boost domestic production to help reduce reliance on costly imports. India imports 85 percent of its crude oil, which is converted into petrol and diesel, and almost half of its natural gas is converted into compressed natural gas and used in industries.

Speaking at the Global South Voice summit, Hardeep Singh Puri said the government has targeted to increase the geographic area under exploration and production to 0.5 million square kilometers or 15 per cent by 2025 from the current 0.25 million square kilometers.

“We expect an investment of about $58 billion in exploration and production (oil and gas) by 2023,” he said. “Many multinational companies such as Chevron, ExxonMobil and TotalEnergies are showing keen interest in investing in the Indian exploration and production sector.” He said India was ready to “explore opportunities for joint development and production of oil and gas assets for mutual benefit and also invite investment in our domestic exploration and production sector”.

Hardeep Singh Puri said the world is facing an unprecedented crisis of 3Fs – “Food, Fuel and Fertilizer”. “We are seeing extreme price swings in energy molecules. The most acute impact of this is being felt in the Global South.” Despite these difficult circumstances, the government has taken several measures to maintain energy security for its citizens.

These include diversifying supply, increasing alternative energy sources such as biofuels, ethanol, and compressed biogas, and increasing the exploration and production footprint along with an emphasis on domestic production; and meeting energy targets through electric vehicles and hydrogen.

“All of these measures provide an easy iteration of achieving our energy security goals,” he said.

He said India had increased blending of ethanol into gasoline from 1.53 per cent in 2013-14 to 10.17 per cent in 2022, which was before the November 2022 deadline and had submitted its target to achieve 20 per cent blending of ethanol into gasoline from 2030 to 2025-26.

“To solve the common concerns of the Global South, India is proposing the establishment of a Global Biofuels Alliance under the auspices of the G20,” he said.

“The Alliance aims to support projects in order to increase the diffusion of biofuels and related technologies, to offer alternative means of sustainable energy, and finally to transition to its circulation among the largest producers and consumers of biofuels.” E20, or gasoline blended with 20 percent ethanol, will soon be rolled out to 11 states and UTs much earlier than the initial target date of April 1, 2023. “15 cities will be covered under Phase 1. We are targeting a phased launch of E20 across across the country from now until April 2025.

The government also aims to establish a production capacity of 15 million tons of compressed biogas (CBG) from 5,000 plants by 2023 with an investment of US$20 billion.

(Except for the headline, this story was not edited by the Alendronaterx staff and was published from a syndicated feed.)

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