TIL Desk/National/New Delhi/ India aims to cut down its oil import bill by Rs 120 billion ($1.74 billion) through increased use of biofuels, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Friday. The South Asian nation, which imports up to 80 per cent of its oil needs, plans to invest Rs 100 billion and would build 12 biofuel refineries, Modi said.
Modi blamed previous governments for not taking the ethanol blending programme seriously and said now its production will triple to 4.5 billion litres in the next four years, leading to import savings of Rs 120 billion. “Ethanol blending programme was started during Vajpayee government. But previous governments did not take ethanol programme seriously.
Now we will produce 4.5 billion litre of ethanol in the next four years from existing 1.41 billion litre. It will result in import savings of Rs 120 billion,” Modi said addressing an event here to mark World Biofuel Day. India meets more than 80 per cent of its oil needs through imports. Apart from the thrust on use of electricity, particularly from renewable sources, India is promoting biofuels for reducing its crude import bill.