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Thursday
February 2019
11:48 AM IST
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Saudi Arabia increases India''s Haj quota to 2 lakh after Modi-Salman talks        SC collegium transfers high court judges        Security of 18 separatists, 155 political leaders withdrawn        Crown Prince orders release of 850 Indian prisoners from Saudi jails        Putin says Russia to take measures if US deploys missiles        Jadhav''s death sentence based on ''extracted confession'', should be annulled: India tells ICJ        Israel strikes on Gaza arson balloons launchers, no injuries reported        Taylor surpasses Fleming becomes highest ODI scorer for NZ        ICC keeping a close watch on India-Pakistan situation ahead of WC        Vivo unveils V15Pro with Industry-first 32 MP pop-up selfie camera        Tripura gets Rs 85 crore Mega Food Park        India, Saudi Arabia ink MoUs for cooperation in tourism, broadcasting        Bernie Sanders enters 2020 US presidential race : Reports        Sixteen states sue Trump over border wall emergency        Djokovic wins his fourth Laureus World Sportsman of the Year        Pakistan shooters not taking part in New Delhi World Cup        Pulwama attack masterminded by Jaish, ISI: corps commander        Cricketer-turned-politician Kirti Azad joins Congress, calls it ''ghar wapsi''        Salve exposes Pak military courts at ICJ, says judges don''t even need law degree        RBI pays Rs 28,000 cr interim dividend to govt ahead of elections        
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Business News
India becomes world's 2nd largest LPG consumer after govt's Ujjawla push
 
New Delhi, Feb 5 (PTI) The government's push to provide clean cooking fuel to every household has turned India into the world's second largest LPG consumer whose demand is projected to rise 34 per cent by 2025, Oil Secretary M M Kutty said Tuesday.

Speaking at the Asia LPG Summit here, he said active LPG consumers have grown at a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15 per cent - from 14.8 crore in 2014-15 to 22.4 crore in 2017-18.

"Rapid increase in population combined with LPG penetration in rural areas has resulted in an average growth of 8.4 per cent in LPG consumption, making India the second largest consumer of LPG in the world at 22.5 million tonnes.

"As per (oil) ministry's projections and forecasts, LPG consumption is expected to grow to 30.3 million tonnes by 2025 and 40.6 million tonnes by 2040," he said.

The government, he said, has taken a number of initiatives to promote usage of LPG across the country especially in rural households which otherwise depend on traditional fuels that are hazardous to health and polluting in nature.

Under Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) of providing free cooking gas (LPG) connection to poor, over 6.31 crore connections have been provided since the launch of the scheme on May 1, 2016.

"Before March 31, 2020, we will provide LPG connections to 8 crore households under PMUY," he said, adding that "LPG connection is issued in the name of the women member of the household."

Speaking at the summit, Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana was launched in May 2016 with the objective of providing free LPG connections to 5 crore women belonging to poor households over a period of three years.

"With the successful implementation of this programme, this scheme has been revised to target 8 crore LPG connections by the financial year 2020. With the revised targets, the scheme now covers all the vulnerable and disadvantaged sections of the society having no LPG connections," he said.

He said the coverage of LPG in the country has now reached close to 90 per cent, rising from about 55 per cent in 2014. "We are confident to meet our target of 8 crore connections in the pursuit of tackling health and environmental problems and driving social change through women empowerment."

LPG is supposed to replace traditional cooking fuels in rural kitchens such as firewood and cow dung which not only contribute to environmental degradation but also have serious health implications on users.

"With estimated imports of above 12 million metric tonnes in the financial year 2018-19, India stands as world's second largest importer of LPG, after China. The country's LPG imports have registered remarkable trend in the last five years, growing at a healthy CAGR of 12.5 per cent, surpassing import volumes of Japan in the financial year 2017," he said.

Also, the government has started transferring the LPG subsidy directly into bank accounts of the beneficiaries, thereby eliminating duplication and fake users. "So far, more than Rs 96,625 crore has been transferred into the bank accounts of consumers," he said.

Under the Direct Benefit Transfer, rather than supplying LPG cylinders at subsidised rates, the government now supplies cylinders at market prices and transfers the subsidy amount into bank accounts.

"This has helped to cut subsidy leakages by curbing diversion of subsidised LPG and ensuring that the actual intended beneficiaries receive the benefits of subsidies. Through this scheme, the government has generated savings of about Rs 50,000 crore," he said.


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