Energy Sector Current Affairs - 2019
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Invest India under Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) in partnership with energy companies has launched Integrate to Innovate Programme for startups in energy sector. It is three-month programme for startups in the power sector aims to foster collaboration between startups and large corporations of the energy sector.
Integrate to Innovate (i2i) Programme
i2i programme will provide opportunity for startups for collaboration and conversation around valuable energy transitions by bringing their ideas to life with guidance and support from corporates. The selected startups will receive cash prize grant of up to Rs 5 lakh along with opportunity to pilot their product with corporates. The corporates will offer selected startups access to technology, technical and commercial mentorship and access to potential customers through corporate network of partners. Startups from innovators across various stages of energy life-cycle i.e. generation, transmission and distribution, storage and consumption in multiple sectors such as households, industry, farm, infrastructure, utility, building and transport are invited under this programme.
It is official Investment Promotion and Facilitation Agency of Central Government. It has been set up as non-profit venture under Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), Ministry of Commerce and Industries. It is mandated to facilitate investments in the country. It is first stop for potential global investors in country.
On June 4, 2018, India received first shipment of its so far cheapest Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) from Russian supplier Gazprom. The LNG has been delivered at a price close to USD 7 per million British Thermal Unit (mmBtu). This price is around 1.5 USD cheaper from the LNG imported from Qatar, which is India’s oldest and largest supplier of LNG. This price is also 1-1.5 USD per mmBtu cheaper than the LNG sourced from Australia and United States.
India’s Natural Gas Production and Import
According to official data, India’s total natural gas production in 2017-18 was 32.64 billion cubic meter of which 22.01 BCM is offshore production while 10.63% is onshore production. The natural gas production in India has fallen in recent years as shown in below graphics:
However, at present, close to half of Natural Gas demand is fulfilled by imports. India’s natural gas import dependence in 2016-17 was close to 45%. At present, India is fourth largest importer of LNG.
Natural Gas is one of the key inputs for generation of power and manufacturing products in fertilizer and steel industries. The current government policy also pushes towards a gas-based economy by raising the share of environment friendly fuel in the energy basket to 15 per cent from current 6.2 per cent.
India’s Gas Deals
At present, Qatar is biggest supplier of Natural Gas to India. The recent shipment from Russia has come under a 20 year deal between India’s State-owned gas company GAIL India Ltd and Russian supplier Gazprom. A few weeks before India had also imported its first ever LNG cargo from US under a long-term import deal. The government policy is to expand the LNG import basket to meet any contingency due to geopolitical or economic reasons.