The Government is working towards making the country self-sufficient for its petroleum needs by 2030, Petroleum Minister M Veerappa Moily said today.

“We are working with a programme that by 2020, 50 per cent of import of petroleum should be stopped and 75 per cent imports should be stopped by 2025. By 2030, the country must become self-sufficient in petroleum,” he said after signing of an MoU with Hindustan Petroleum for setting up a state-of-art refinery in Barmer district of Rajasthan.

“The country has potential inside. We have dynamic professionals and we can do it. Several lakh crores of rupees we are spending on import. How we can come out of poverty if we pay such kind of money outside the country?” he said.

“The Government is working with a vision so we in the 8-9 years could achieve 8 per cent growth rate and we are hopeful that the growth rate would be 10 per cent within next 2-3 years,” the Minister said.

“Everybody should work for that and most importantly not in different directions. All should put efforts for industrial development, inclusive development and economic growth irrespective of party affiliation and ideology,” he said.

Speaking on the refinery, Moily said it will accelerate economic development of the state and development of the region will take place after the refinery is setup, hopefully by 2016-17.

He said that remaining formalities should be completed within next 3 months so that foundation laying ceremony by the UPA Chariperson Sonia Gandhi could take place in Barmer.

The Minister also said that the refinery project will generate direct and indirect job opportunities for locals and asked the state Government of Rajasthan to depute a team to work out a plan for skill development of locals so that the locals can be provided employment in the refinery once it is set up.

The refinery having a capacity of 9 MTPA will be set up with an estimated capital investment of Rs 37,320 crore for which Secretary (Petroleum and Mines) Raj Sudhansh Pant and Director (Refineries) HPCL K Murli signed the MoU at Chief Minister’s office here.

Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot, Union MoS Petroleum Laxmi Panabaka, other public representatives and senior officials from the state Government and the HPCL were present on the occasion.

(This article was published on March 14, 2013)
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