Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday said the high international price of oil was putting a big strain on the economy. Effort should be made, he said, for reducing the transport sector's dependence on oil.
"High international prices of oil contribute significantly to India's import bill, to our trade deficit and, I dare say in a world of rising petroleum prices, to inflation, thus putting a big strain on our economy," he said while unveiling the National Electric Mobility Mission Plan 2020.
Noting 80 per cent of India's requirement of petroleum products was imported, the Prime Minister said this dependence was likely to increase.
The transport sector on Wednesday accounted for nearly 30 per cent of the worldwide consumption of energy and of this, three-fourths came from road vehicles, he said.
"Further, oil provides 95 per cent of the primary energy consumed in the transport sector worldwide. The International Energy Agency projects that 75 per cent of the projected future increases in oil demand will be from the transport sector," he added.
Stressing that India and China were likely to account for a major part of this increased global demand for oil, the PM said, "It is, therefore, important that we make efforts for reducing the transport sector's dependence on oil.
"One of the ways in which this can be achieved is by faster adoption of the full range of electric vehicle technologies, including hybrid vehicles."
Image: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh