Oil price should be kept at affordable levels: Pradhan

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on April 10, 2020

Dharmendra Pradhan, Petroleum Minister   -  The Hindu

Oil prices should be kept at affordable levels to allow for a consumption-led demand recovery, Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas and Steel, Dharmendra Pradhan, said.

He was participating in the G-20 Extraordinary Energy Ministers’ virtual meeting on Friday. The meeting was called by Saudi Arabia, in its capacity as the G-20 Presidency, and chaired by Saudi Arabia Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz. The meeting was attended by Energy Ministers of G-20 countries, guest countries and heads of international organisations including OPEC, IEA and IEF.

The G-20 Energy Ministers’ focused on ways and means to ensure stable energy markets, which were affected due to demand reduction as result of the Covid-19 pandemic and surplus production.

The meeting will adopt a Joint Statement, which proposes to establish a Task Force to advise the G-20 Energy Ministers on the next steps, and agreed to remain engaged in the coming days.

Commenting on the ongoing energy market fluctuations, Pradhan said India has always advocated a stable oil market, which is reasonable for producers and affordable for consumers. “He appreciated the collective efforts of OPEC and OPEC-plus countries to balance the supply-side factors which is imperative for long-term sustainability. He has, however, urged that oil prices should be targeted to affordable levels to allow for a consumption-led demand recovery,” an official statement said.

Pradhan also highlighted Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s decision to provide 80.3 million poor families free LPG cylinders, as part of a $23-billion relief package. He emphasised that India was, and will continue to be, the global energy demand centre. He also highlighted the Centre’s efforts to fill the country’s Strategic Petroleum Reserves.

Published on April 10, 2020

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