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India believes its efforts to build fuel infra should benefit neighbours: Swaraj


India strongly believes that its efforts to build oil and gas infrastructure should also benefit its neighbours, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said on Thursday.

Sushma Swaraj

"Oil and gas are strategic commodities as price variations impact people down to the bottom of the pyramid fuel", the minister said.

"We are well aware that just as energy is a key pillar for our economic growth and development, it is also the same for our neighbours. Our government has been following 'Neighbourhood First' in our foreign policy," she added.

"We strongly believe that our efforts to build our oil and gas infrastructure should also benefit our neighbours and promote economic development and raise their standards of living. We appreciate the close cooperation of our neighbours in this regard," Swaraj said.

The minister was delivering the valedictory address at the IEF Ministerial Meeting.

She said India supplies 100 per cent of the domestic requirement of petroleum products to landlocked Nepal since 1974.

Last week Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Nepal Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli jointly initiated work on a petroleum product pipeline between India and Nepal.

"We are also working with Nepal to increase availability of LPG and natural gas and build an efficient distribution system," Swaraj said.

India is engaged with Bangladesh to build a pipeline to supply diesel to Parbatipur and natural gas to the power plant at Khulna.

Work is also in progress to build LNG terminals, both land-based and floating, the minister noted.

Also, India supplies 100 per cent of Bhutan's petroleum products requirements.

"We are working closely with them to increase LPG penetration based on our own successful Ujjwala programme," she said.

The Sri Lankan government has been according to priority for enhanced use of gas, she said, adding that in this context, India is engaged in setting up an LNG terminal in that country to introduce gas as an important and sustainable energy source.

"In Myanmar, we are working closely with the government to promote use of LPG and provide diesel to the North West region through refineries in our Northeastern states," she added.


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