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Home: India aiming to become self-reliant in crude oil production by 2030: Moily

Union Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister M Veerappa Moily today said the Government had set ambitious targets that aimed to reduce India’s crude oil imports by half by 2020, by 75 per cent by 2025 and achieve self-sufficiency and energy independence for the country by 2030.
“We are taking every possible initiative to work towards our goal of attaining self-sufficiency in petroleum,” he said in his address to the National Editors’ Conference on Social and Infrastructure Issues here.

“China has seen a doubling of gas production in the last six years (2005-2011). The US has seen a tenfold increase in shale gas production over the last six years. Thus, like China and US, we too can change our energy landscape in short span,” he said.

Mr Moily said the target was achievable and pointed out that India had so far established only 73 billion barrels of oil and equivalent gas through exploration out of 205 billion barrels of prognosticated hydrocarbon resources.

“Thus, about 133 billion barrels of prognosticated resources remain to be unlocked through exploration. As you will appreciate, this will be possible only by speedy implementation of new exploration programmes across the country,” he said.

He said his Ministry had constituted a commttee under the chairmanship of Dr Vijay Kelkar to prepare a roadmap for enhancing domestic production of oil and gas and sustainable reduction in import dependency by 2030.

In addition, the committee will also examine institutional mechanism for appraisal of the Indian sedimentary basins to the extent of 75 per cent by 2015 and 100 per cent by 2025, utilization of Oil Industry Development Board cess and other innovative resource mobilization approaches for appraising the unexplored/partly explored acreages and development and promotion of indigenous service industry in the exploration and production (E&P) sector.

It will also review the institutional mechanism to acquire acreages abroad for exploration and production as well as pursuing diplomatic and political initiatives for import of gas from neighbouring and other countries with emphasis on transnational gas pipelines, suggest steps to be taken for ensuring adequacy of finances for R & D required for building knowledge infrastructure in E & P activities as well as steps to be taken for development of gas transportation infrastructure for establishing countrywide marketplace. The committee will submit its report within six months, he said.

“Even as we are trying to enhance domestic production through numerous policy measures, we are working to create enabling and conducive environment to promote investments, by making fiscal terms that are simple to administer,” he said.

Towards this direction, last year, under the direction of the Prime Minister of India, a committee was constituted under the chairmanship of economist C Rangarajan to look into the mechanism of Production Sharing Contracts, he said.

He said te report of the committee was under active consideration and very soon the government would work towards implementing the recommendations.

“This will improve the overall governance mechanism of the upstream oil & gas industry and will act as a confidence building measure to attract the much needed risk capital and newer technologies,” he said.

Mr Moily said India had imported crude oil worth more than Rs 6.70 lakh crore in the last financial year.

He said that, as part of the efforts to enhance production, the Ministry had recently allowed exploration in mining lease areas, even after the completion of exploration period.

“This clarity & policy direction will attract significant investments in the Indian E&P sector and result in higher domestic production of hydrocarbons. This is expected to add substantial volume of oil and gas production in the existing mining lease areas,” he said.

He said the New Exploration Licensing Policy (NELP), launched in 1999, had helped to increase E&P activities.

“Prior to adoption of the NELP, only 11 per cent of Indian sedimentary basins were under exploration. Since the operationalization of the NELP in 1999, the government has awarded 47.3 per cent of Indian sedimentary basin area for exploration. Similarly, 100% Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) has been permitted in exploration and production of oil and gas,” he said.

Mr Moily said domestic crude oil production was expected to touch 42.31 million tonnes during 2012-13, which would be 11.08 per cent higher than the previous year. He said the increase in production is mainly on account of higher crude oil production from Barmer fields in Rajasthan where current oil production is 1,70,000 bbl/day.

He said the production of natural gas during 2012-13 is expected to be 117.8 MMSCMD which is about 9% lower than the previous year mainly due to lower production from KG D6 deepwater block.

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