New Delhi: Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas & Steel Shri Dharmendra Pradhan today held a meeting with Australian Minister for Resources and Northern Australia, Senator the Hon. Matthew Canavan. Both Ministers stressed on the importance of energy and resources in the bilateral relationship, and agreed to expand the scope of cooperation given that India offers a large energy market and Australia is rich in natural resources particularly coal and LNG, apart from Uranium.
Pradhan mentioned that India is already an importer of LNG from Australia. Given India’s major initiatives to move into a gas-based economy, there is significant scope for expanding LNG imports from Australia. He also mentioned that Indian consumer is price sensitive, and therefore affordability of LNG imports from Australia will be an important factor in enhancing cooperation in this area. Minister Canavan underlined Australia’s commitment to expand its ties with India, and highlighted its position as a reliable partner in meeting India’s energy security needs. Shri Pradhan called for greater investment flow from Australia to India and sharing of best practices.
Minister Pradhan also called for greater cooperation in the area of coking coal. He said there is need for coordination between two countries by bringing together Ministries responsible for Coal, Mines, Petroleum and Natural Gas and Steel of each side to achieve greater synergy and enhance bilateral energy cooperation. He further added that India being the largest importer of Australian metallurgical coal, a favourable differential pricing mechanism should be worked out. Minister Pradhan also pointed that opportunities for collaboration will continue to expand as India’s energy mix evolves.
The two dignitaries agreed to build further on a wide range of energy resources, which have a multiplier effect on the economy, in the coming months so that the energy pillar of bilateral engagement can be strengthened.