Ethanol Production In India To Be Tripled By 2022: PM Modi

New Delhi: PM Narendra Modi on Friday said that India will triple its ethanol production in the next four years in order to substantially reduce the oil import bills. This will help in saving Rs. 12,000 crore from oil imports bill, informed the Prime Minister on the occasion of ‘World Biofuels Day’, which was observed on Friday.

The Prime Minister blamed the previous government for not encouraging the production and adoption of ethanol and said that the Vajpayee government had started the ethanol blending programme in the country which was not pursued by the successor UPA government seriously. The PM stated that his government has planned 12 biofuel refineries in the country at an investment of 110,000 crore.

PM Modi further proclaimed that India will now produce 450 crore litres of ethanol in the next four years from the existing 141 crore litres which will result in an import savings of 112,000 crore. Besides this, the government will achieve 10% ethanol blending in petrol by 2022 and is aiming to double it to 20% in the future.

However, the government’s biofuel policy has come under criticism, with Kalikesh Singh Deo, Member of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas saying that the policy itself needs revisiting.

Questioning the Prime Minister’s claims, Singh Deo emphasised that a more holistic approach needs to be adopted in order to meet the accordant targets of ethanol blending, which reportedly stands at an abysmal level of 2 percent at present.

Deo further stated that the Central government has been claiming to set up 12 Biofuel refineries since 2014 but nothing substantial has been done till date.

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