Asia LPG Summit
India showcases world delegates with the success of its unprecedented initiative of LPG penetration reaching 72%.
The Asia LPG Summit ‘Emerging Trends’ at the Taj Palace Hotel in Delhi concluded successfully with plenty of takeaways for world delegates who were clearly impressed with India’s commitment for clean energy and its recent achievements in trying to give its people affordable and accessible LPG solutions.
The summit, held for the first time in India, was organised by the World LPG Association in partnership with the India’s largest oil PSUs: Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL), and Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL) under the aegis of the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas. The summit is of special significance in the context of India being the world’s secondlargest consumer of LPG, with annual consumption exceeding 18 million tonnes and about a 10% annual growth.
Dharmendra Pradhan, Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas inaugurated the event. Deliberations focused on the need to replace traditional fuels such as firewood, coal and cow dung cakes with LPG. This focus of finding innovative solutions to implementing LPG use among populations of the developing world is a part of global efforts to increase access to clean energy.
In his inaugural address to a gathering of the world’s leading professionals in the field of LPG solutions, Dharmendra Pradhan announced that LPG coverage in the country has reached 72 per cent. He highlighted the manner in which the government had gone about promoting the domestic use of LPG through schemes such as Pahal, Ujjwala, Direct Benefit Transfer and ‘Give-it-up’, aimed at increasing its population’s access to LPG. He spoke of several milestones achieved and to be achieved in this area under the leadership of Prime Minister Modi. The minister said, “Pahal has been identified by Guinness Book of World Records as the largest cash transfer programme in the world. More than Rs 420 billion or USD $6.5 billion have been transferred to LPG consumers directly. Using PAHAL, we blocked millions of fake connections and saved Rs 210 billion subsidy in 2014-15 and 2015-16.
Commercial LPG sales increased by 39.3% during the period April 2015 – March 2016 and 12 million consumers voluntarily gave up their subsidy for less privileged sections of society.”
Speaking on the occasion, Yagiz Eyuboglu, WLPGA, President Koc Energy Group Turkey said, “The summit is rightly entitled “Transforming Lives”. The expansion of LPG sector in India seems been unparalleled in speed, skill and ambition. The Indian market is amazing, motivating and worth emulating.”
B Ashok, Chairman, Indian Oil Corporation stressed on regional cooperation in this field for the world’s secure future. He also appreciated the significant role played by the private sector.
A series of round-table and panel discussions were held over the two days among the key stakeholders.
James Rockall, CEO, WLPGA underscored the need to foster cleaner energy. “The aim is to gain 1 billion LPG users by 2030 making the product consumerfriendly and safe to use. The key points that need to be focused on are power, social empowerment and gender equality,” he said.
M K Surana, Chairman, HPCL said, “LPG has been a catalyst for social change and women are being empowered as LPG connections are being released in the name of women.”
K D Tripathi, Secretary, Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas in his address announced that new models and supply chains will be set up in coming years to meet the growing demands of LPG.
The session on ‘Global Trends, Regional Impact’ took note of the fact that the LPG industry is going through a profound change as it navigates a period of three continuing and strengthening trends – strong production, matched by solid demand and sustained lower international prices.
In the discussion ‘LPG, Energy Access and the Indian Context’, Prof Mukul Asher, Senior Fellow and Professor, Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, National University of Singapore, stated that the “Partnership between government and other agencies are working for citizen’s welfare.”
Prof Kirk Smith, Professor of Global Environment Program School of Public Health, University of California, Berkeley, highlighting the importance of LPG said, “By using LPG, we are gifting good health to others. 2540% of air pollution is caused by using solid fuels for cooking. LPG should be to be seen as a social investment, not a subsidy.”
The panel also discussed the challenges faced by LPG today, the major reasons for low LPG penetration are: Monetary, Access and Behavioural.
The discussion on LPG in India: Then and Now, Unprecedented Initiatives highlighted auxiliary concerns with the LPG industry. Arun Kumar Singh, Executive Director, LPG said, “Banking, Aadhar and Mobile Penetration have hugely affected the success of PMUY scheme. ‘Dignity to women is the focus of PMUY’ changed the lives of millions across the country.”
The discussion on LPG customer experience focused on the customer’s point of view of LPG usage. The panel interacted with women from Ujjwala and ASHA using LPG to understand their views and share their experiences on using LPG.
The summit was a free and candid exchange of ideas which will hopefully trigger the spirit of innovation in achieving clean healthy and environment-friendly and fuel for all.
Based out of Paris, the World LPG Association (WLPGA) is the voice of the global LPG industry representing the full LPG value chain. The association’s primary goal is to add value to the sector by driving premium demand for LPG, while also promoting compliance to good business and safety practices.
The WLPGA brings together over 200 private and public companies operating in more than 125 countries involved in one, several or all activities of the industry; develops long-term partnerships with international organisations and implements projects on local and global scales. The association was established in 1987 and granted special consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council in 1989.
Banking, Aadhar and Mobile Penetration have hugely affected the success of PMUY scheme. ‘Dignity to women is the focus of PMUY’ changed the lives of millions across the country.