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Rajya Sabha takes up Petroleum Regulatory Bill for discussion

Written by: Staff
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New Delhi, Mar 2 (UNI) The Rajya Sabha today took up for consideration the Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board Bill, 2005, providing for establishment of a Board to regulate the refining, processing, storage, transportation, distribution and marketing petroleum products and natural gas.

The Bill piloted by Petroleum Minister Murli Deora aims at promoting competitive markets and protect the interest of consumers and entities engaged in specified activities relating to petroleum products and natural gas in all parts of athe country.

He said coal, oil and gas constituted 51 per cent, 36 per cent and nine per cent respectively and the present level of the energy mix is to sustain till 2025 and the economy was poised to grow at eight per cent during 2005-06 and the trend was expected to continue in the foreseeable future.

Mr Deora said the country imported 70 per cent of crude oil requirements to meet the domestic demand of petroleum products and 50 per cent of gas demand was met by indigenous production.

He said the Bill which was referred to the Parliamentary Committee, which had made 49 recommendations out of which the Government had accepted 47.

Supporting the amendments, Mr V Narayanasamy (Congress) said the Regulatory Board was necessary in view of the entrance of private sector in the petroleum operations and protection of consumer interests was one of the tasks of the Board.

He also made a strong plea for supplying a portion of the Krishna Godavari Basin gas supplies to power starved Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu states. If these states which were located near the gas find were denied access for utilisation, there was bound to be storms of protest.

''If you can take the gas supplies to Gujarat, you can't deny it to those states which are required for growing needs of industries of the peninsular region,'' he argued.

BJP's Kripal Parmar also spoke on the need to set up the Board for regulation of petroleum operations.

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