India launches 12th city gas distribution bidding round
India's petroleum and natural gas ministry on October 13 launched the 12th city gas distribution (CGD) bidding round, covering 92 districts in five states and two union territories, state-owned All India Radio reported the same day. This round is expected to bring access to natural gas to almost the entire country, except for Mizoram, Andaman & Nicobar, and Lakshadweep.
The minister of petroleum and natural gas, Hardeep Singh Puri, highlighted the importance of natural gas in India's energy transition. He said that the government is aiming to increase the share of natural gas in the energy basket to 15% by 2023 from 6-7% today.
The gas pipeline network in India has expanded significantly in recent years, from 14,000 km in 2014 to 23,500 km today, Puri said. The government plans to expand the network to 32,000 km in the coming years.
CGD sector in India has four distinct segments: CNG predominantly used as auto-fuel, and piped natural gas (PNG) used in domestic, commercial and industrial segments.
ICRA recently said that CNG is expected to be the key driver of gas demand growth within the CGD sector in India. It attributes this growth to the robust registration of CNG vehicles in the country.