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India's energy demand to grow by 4.2%: Dharmendra Pradhan
Economic Times, 11 Sep '19

India's energy demand is projected to grow by 4.2% through 2035, an expansion faster than all major economies of the world, Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said Tuesday as he sought investments in the country's energy chain.

Speaking at the eighth Asian Ministerial Energy Roundtable in Abu Dhabi, he said the share of world's third-largest energy consumer in total global primary energy demand is set to double to 11% by 2040.

"The projected energy demand growth is 4.2% per annum up to 2035. This makes India's energy demand growing faster than all major economies of the world," he said. "We are preparing for such a growth path of energy demand in the country."

Pradhan said the per capita energy consumption of the country with 1.3 billion people is lower than the global average.

The projected energy demand expansion calls for making matching investments in the energy sector, he said adding at USD 85 billion India recorded the highest growth of foreign energy investments anywhere in the world.

He said Prime Minister Narendra Modi earlier this year declared that "energy justice" is a top priority for India.

"This encompasses a renewed commitment of India to advance inclusive access to secure, affordable and sustainable energy services," he said.

Pradhan said India was significantly expanding its energy infrastructure -- be it power generation, more renewables and gas-based infrastructure -- pipelines, city gas network and LNG terminals.

"We launched a major campaign to improve access to clean cooking fuel under the Ujjwala Yojana scheme three years back," he said adding the target of 8 crore connections was achieved just a couple of days back.

The scheme has ensured that LPG coverage reaches more than 90% from 55% five years ago, he said. "India attained universal electrification in all villages. This year, India aims to achieve 100% electrification of households."

In World Bank Ease of Getting Electricity ranking, India improved its ranking from 111 in 2014 to 29 in 2018.

The minister said India is jumping from BS-VI emission compliant fuel to BS-VI fuel by April 2020. This is the equivalent of EURO-VI standards.

"India is moving towards a gas-based economy by increasing the share of gas from 6% to 15% in the energy mix by 2030," he said. "We have constructed over 16,000 km of gas pipeline and an additional 11,000 km is under construction. We have covered over 400 districts and 70% of our population."

Also, the country is on the way to achieving the target of adding 175 GW of renewable energy sources by 2022, he said.