GECF provides a glimpse into natural gas’ future in India at the Global Oil & Gas CEOs interaction session

Source: press release, 29 October 2020

GECF India Energy Forum (illustration: GECF)
GECF India Energy Forum (illustration: GECF)

Yury Sentyurin, the Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF) Secretary General highlighted the enormous potential of natural gas which has proved to be a viable energy option that contributes efficiently to achieve a balance between the environment, social and economic dimensions of the sustainable development, during interactions with the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, at the Global Oil and Gas CEOs session, held semi-virtually on 26th October.

Chaired by HE Honourable Prime Minister Modi and India’s Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas and Minister of Steel HE Dharmendra Pradhan, the Global Oil & Gas CEOs interaction session was held right after the inauguration of the 2-day India Energy Forum – CERAWeek.

As India rises to become the third-largest energy consumer of the world with expected investments in upwards of USD 300 billion by 2030, the government has placed its faith in natural gas to drive the change in India’s energy map.

PM Modi highlighted the importance of natural gas by stating, “While the focus is to make India a gas-based economy, the nation would also be raising oil refining capacity…Leading global bodies project that global demand will contract for the next few years, but these agencies project India as a leading consumer.”

This was endorsed by the GECF Secretary General Yury Sentyurin, who, in his address to the gathering of energy industry’s most powerful decision makers, confirmed the expected rise in demand in India: “Our projections based on the GECF’s highly-acclaimed Global Gas Model show a promising outlook for the future of gas production in India: the volume of marketed natural gas production will reach the level of 60 billion cubic metres by 2050, a lion share of which (73%) will be sourced from yet-to-find (YTF) resources.”

“The GECF has a lot to contribute to the success of the many upstream investments that will steward these discovery projects in India,” he added.

The GECF Secretary General acknowledged the recent launch of the Gas Exchange, a first-ever online delivery-based gas-trading platform, as an “outstanding achievement” of the Indian Government. He further appreciated India’s vision to unlock the true versatility of the natural gas to achieve the country’s climate action targets.

The strong relationship between India and the GECF is being propelled by the world’s second most populous nation’s planned increase of natural gas consumption, from current level of 6% to 15% by 2030, as it fulfils rising demand in consumption but also works to realise its climate action targets. The GECF members, such as Angola, Nigeria, and Qatar are some of the leading exporters of gas to India, making up 80% of the LNG supply to the South Asian nation. Qatar’s Minister of State for Energy Affairs HE Saad Sherida Al-Kaabi also participated in the session.

“Despite Year 2020 becoming challenging for the world, we are witnessing that India remains consistent in terms of its long-term commitment to the continuous expansion and advancement of the national industry, as well as to its environmental pledges linked to the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement provisions,” noted Secretary General Sentyurin.

Citing the GECF Global Gas Outlook 2050’s latest available iteration, the Secretary General affirmed that natural gas will be the indispensable fuel complementing the energy transition. It is expected to overtake “dirty coal” in 2025 and become the largest global primary energy source by mid-century.

Further, this abundant, flexible, clean source of energy will expand specifically across the Asia Pacific, North America, and the Middle East markets, which will be responsible for more than 75% of the total gas demand growth by 2050.

The GECF’s participation in the Global Oil & Gas CEOs was a continuation of its strong bilateral relationship with India, which has emerged as an important global power and a prominent voice in the G20 association and the BRICS coalition. The Forum’s presence also came within the framework of active participation in producer-consumer dialogues.