Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan on Sunday inaugurated the third India Energy Forum by CERAWeek along with Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. Kenneth I. Juster , US Ambassador to India was also present at the occasion.
Speaking at the conference’s opening dinner in New Delhi, Pradhan invited global energy majors to invest in the world's fastest growing energy consumer, promising stable policy and regulatory regime.
Pradhan said as the government looks at New India of 2022, "I invite the global and Indian industry leaders to discuss solutions to enhance all 4 pillars of India’s energy vision -- energy access, efficiency, sustainability and energy security".
India is the 6th largest economy in the world and the 3rd largest energy consumer after the US and China. "India will be the key driver of global energy demand in the coming decades. In India, we are now prepared to accept every challenge," he said.
With a vibrant democracy, stable polity, reform focused approach and strong institutional framework, "I invite the global industry to become partners in our progress and tap huge investment opportunities available in the energy sector of India," the minister said, adding the government has taken several measures to overhaul the hydrocarbon policy to ensure investor friendly environment.
Pradhan said global oil and gas majors like Saudi Aramco, ADNOC, BP, Shell, Total, Roseneft and ExxonMobil are making their significant presence in India.
Speaking at the conference, Sitharaman said, “India is looking at transformational changes. India’s energy commitments pose a lot of challenges. We have a leadership which is politically very committed to balance the commitments given at CoP21 and the imperative to fulfil energy need of every Indian. Achieving the target of providing LPG to 8 Cr families has been made possible by the strong commitment of our Government to ensure a better, environment friendly fuel to people. Our Government has ensured that atmosphere to invest is going to be friendlier. There is a continuous commitment to bring in deep reforms and we will continue on that path.”
US Ambassador to India, Juster, said energy cooperation is the "centre piece of India-US relationship."
“The journey of India-US relationship over last 20 years has been extraordinary. A strong, prosperous and democratic India is in the interest of US and the world. Trade between India and US continues to expand. Energy cooperation is the centre piece of our bilateral relationship. Prime Minister Modi has called for India’s economy to grow to $5 trillion and United States is unique poised to support India in this journey," Juster said.
(With inputs from PTI)