Manmohan Singh urges oil firms to explore hydrocarbon-rich areas

Manmohan Singh urges oil firms to explore hydrocarbon-rich areas

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Sunday urged Indian as well as foreign oil explorers to buy blocks and drill in India to help the country meet its soaring demand for energy.

Speaking at the Petrotech 2014 Conference, Mr. Singh stressed that ensuring adequate energy supply at affordable rates was vital for the economic growth of the country.

Underlining that India is the world's fourth largest consumer of energy, Mr. Singh stressed on the special need of developing the hydrocarbon sector.

Speaking on the topic, Mr. Singh said, "With this in mind, we are encouraging domestic and global companies to explore potentially hydrocarbon-rich areas in the framework of a stable and enabling policy environment."

India is currently the world's seventh biggest energy producer, accounting for 2.5 per cent of world's total annual production of energy. According to Mr. Singh, the country needed to hike its energy production by 3-4 times over the next two decades.

Currently, India is importing nearly 79 per cent of its total oil needs and around 50 per cent of its gas requirement.

Taking a cue from Mr. Singh, Oil Minister M Veerappa Moily stressed on the need for taking bold decisions even in the face of criticism. He said bold decisions needed to help the country move forward. He even urged policymakers to alter their mindsets towards energy issues.

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