Indian to double oil refining capacity over next 5 years, says prime minister

India was working towards doubling its oil refining capacity over the next five years, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said at the convocation ceremony of the Pandit Deendayal University on Saturday, adding that the energy sector was at a crossroads as major changes were taking place due to the pandemic.

“Today, there are unlimited opportunities in the energy sector in India. You all have reached this sector at the right time,” he told the students.

“In this decade alone, in just the oil and gas sector, crores of investment will happen. So for you, there are ample opportunities in the energy sector in India.”

Stating that the nation was transiting towards a greener future, the prime minister said India is  aiming to increase the share of natural gas in its energy mix by four times over the next decade as part of efforts to bring down the carbon footprint by 30-35%.

Modi also said that the startup ecosystem to boost the nation’s energy security system is being strengthened and a fund has been created for students and professionals.

“You have the responsibility of building an India of the future. Think about what a golden period you are in. You would not have thought of it. India will complete 75 years of independence in 2022 and 100 years in 2047. These (upcoming) 25 years are most important years of your life,” he said.

India currently draws most of its energy from fossil fuels, mainly crude oil. Their imports are the biggest drain on the country’s foreign exchange reserves.

The government has adopted a multi-pronged approach to promote development of renewable energy. India also has some of the world’s most polluted cities, which have raised their susceptibility to covid including the national capital New Delhi.

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