High oil prices prompt India to step up efforts to develop green energy: Indian Minister

ABU DHABI – High global oil prices have prompted India to step up its efforts to develop green energy sources, a senior Indian official told Emirates News Agency (WAM), adding that the India wanted to strengthen cooperation with the United Arab Emirates and the rest of the world in this area, as well as the traditional energy sector.

In India, we are witnessing an acceleration in the deployment of green energies in all areas; “These are the unintended consequences of higher prices [of oil]we are redoubling our efforts to get into green energy,” said Hardeep Singh Puri, India’s Minister of Housing and Urban Affairs and Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas, on Monday.

Bullish note on future energy

In an exclusive interview with WAM during Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition and Conference 2022 (ADIPEC), Puri said that India’s cooperation with the UAE and the rest of the world in the green energy field would give an optimistic note on the future energy scenario.
“It’s not just traditional fossil fuels that we need to cooperate on. We need to strengthen and accelerate our cooperation in solar, wind, biofuels and green hydrogen, as well as traditional energy sources,” he stressed.

However, Puri pointed out, meeting the growing global demand for energy from green energy sources is a challenge for the international community for several reasons.

“Global oil consumption, which is around 99 or 100 million barrels per day, will increase [further]. It grows one percent more [per annum] while India’s consumption increases by 3%,” noted the Minister.

World challenges

Although overall energy needs will be higher in the months and years to come, “we hope that the [growing] demand will increasingly be met by other, greener sources as well. And so, in India, we have made very good progress [in green energy],” he said.

There have been billions of dollars of investment in India’s electric vehicle segment, storage, batteries and related areas, the minister said.

Likewise, there have been advances in biofuels, including compressed biogas and green hydrogen. “So in all areas of green energy, we treat it in mission mode.”

India’s biggest oil supplier keeps changing

The sources of oil import to India are constantly changing due to several factors such as crude availability, long term contracts, exchange rate and discounts etc., the Minister explained, noting that the Petroleum purchases are made by companies and not by the government.

The United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia have been among the main suppliers for many years, he pointed out. At the time, India imported only 0.2% of its total oil requirements from Russia till March 31 this year, but Russia has now emerged as a major supplier of crude oil to India. India buys $20 billion worth of oil from the United States and $48 billion worth of oil from OPEC+ every year, accounting for 14 percent of its production, Puri said.

“Today, Iraq is number one and Russia is India’s second largest oil supplier. Will it stay that way? I don’t know,” he said.

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