Mumbai: Petronet LNG Ltd, India’s largest importer of liquid gas, plans to set up a liquefied natural gas eco-structure, Prabhat Singh, chief executive and managing director of the company said.

“Eco-structure means creating infrastructure where we have filling stations, service stations, storages etc. Through infrastructure, we can excite people to convert to LNG," said Singh. He was speaking on the sidelines of an energy conference in Mumbai. Creating the eco-structure would require an investment of around Rs15,000 crore over the next decade, Singh said.

The investment will be made by all the stakeholders involved in creating the infrastructure, he said, adding that Petronet LNG’s investment will be Rs1,500 crore over a few years.

“We have identified highway of 4000km (Delhi-Mumbai-Bangalore-Chennai) where we would be putting up our 20 LNG re-filling outlets. We will start with a few thousand trucks and buses. Before that, we have spoken to the Gujarat state to run 20 of their buses and 10 buses of the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation. We are also talking to the Rajasthan government to run a few of their buses on LNG," Singh said.

To facilitate the availability of LNG, the company is also planning to bid for hydrocarbon blocks under the HELP (Hydrocarbon exploration and licensing policy). 

“We would be looking at the discovered fields which would be on offer in HELP. There is a need in the country to create localised LNG. We can start LNG on a small scale and take it to the hinterland in LNG form. So we are in discussions with Focus Energy in Rajasthan to buy gas from their blocks and convert it into LNG and sell the same," added Singh. Focus Energy holds two onshore blocks in Rajasthan. 

 According to the BP Energy Outlook 2018, India will overtake China as the largest growth market for energy by late 2020s.

The country will see its energy consumption grow by over 4.2% per annum, the fastest among all the major economies of the world.

Demand for natural gas will grow by 185% to 14 billion cubic feet (Bcf) per day in 2040 from 5 Bcf per day in 2016.

With an annual growth of 4.5%, natural gas will see its share in the energy basket growing to 7% in 2040 from 6% in 2016, according to the outlook.

However, with an annual growth rate of 3.5%, oil’s share in the country’s total energy mix will decline to 25% in 2040 from 29% in 2016.

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