Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday showcased India's phenomenal projected growth in energy demand, stable and decisive leadership, and sustained reforms to invite global investors in the country's oil and gas exploration and new energy, including green hydrogen. Modi in his inaugural address at India Energy Week 2023 said India is the most opportune place to invest in the energy sector at present.
The country is projected to witness the fastest growth in energy demand in the world in the next decade, the Prime Minister noted. "I ask you to explore all opportunities connected with India's energy sector. India is the most opportune place for investment today," he said at the event, being attended by several ministers, corporate leaders and experts from different nations. He stated that despite the global crisis, India remained a bright spot for the world in 2022 due to its internal resilience.
"Multiple factors were behind it like stable and decisive government, sustained reforms, and socio-economic empowerment at the grassroots," he said. He also noted that over 6 lakh km of optical fibre network has been laid to provide internet facilities to the villages. "The number of Broadband users in India has become 13 times more than it was 9 years ago, and the number of internet connections has tripled in the same period," the Prime Minister said.
He said India is working on expanding its refining capacity from 250 MMTPA to 450 MMPTA. He also informed that India's gas pipeline network will expand to 35,000 km in the next four-five years from 22,000 km presently. "In 2014, the length of gas pipeline in India was around 14,000 km; now it stands at over 22,000 km. Gas pipeline network in India to reach 35,000 km in the next 4-5 years. The government has reduced the no-go area for oil and gas exploration to 10 lakh square kilometres, which will unlock investment opportunities," Modi said.
On 20 per cent ethanol blending with petrol, he said India is moving towards achieving the target. Modi also showcased the government initiatives on promoting green hydrogen in the country. He said, "Another sector in which India is taking lead in the world is Green Hydrogen. The National Green Hydrogen Mission will give a new direction to India in the 21st century." The Prime Minister also mentioned the recently unveiled National Hydrogen Mission, saying that it will bring investments worth Rs 8 lakh crore.
"Today, India is one of the world's leading voices in energy transition & developing new resources of energy. IMF, in their growth projections for 2023 also stated that India will remain the fastest-growing major economy," he said. He also talked about replacing 25 per cent of grey hydrogen used in the country with green hydrogen. Modi stated that the Budget (for 2023-34) has provided Rs 10 lakh crore for capital expenditure, which will give a boost to green hydrogen, solar power and road sectors.
The Prime Minister also recalled several initiatives taken by the government to promote green energy and make India net zero by 2070. The Budget 2023-24 has provided Rs 35,000 crore to the petroleum and natural gas ministry for achieving the net-zero target. India Energy Week 2023 is the first major event of G20 under India's presidency, Modi noted. He further stated that crores of people have come out of poverty and entered the middle class due to government initiatives. India has become the second-largest producer of mobile phones and the fourth-largest crude refiner in the world, the Prime Minister said.
Solar cooktops launched today will give a new dimension to cooking in India, he added.