Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday said the government will consider the Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme for Chemicals and Petrochemicals sector to make India a manufacturing hub for such products.
In view of stringent pollution control regulations and rising labour cost, she said, global manufacturers in the chemical industry are looking at diversifying their products and production capability and India stands out as an alternative destination for manufacturing. Besides, India offers a large domestic market, she said while addressing the third edition of the summit on ‘Global Chemicals and Petrochemicals Manufacturing Hubs in India’.
Also read: Governance should be front and centre for startup ecosystem: Tata 1mg co-founder on startup
“If viable options exist, it exists in such markets where there is a domestic buffer and beyond which there is an export potential. So that is where the government’s policies have been facilitating,” she said. “We are in favour of having India becoming a manufacturing hub and therefore of course we will consider the PLI also for the chemicals and petrochemicals,” she added. She emphasised that the industry which has great potential should create manufacturing capacity keeping in mind sustainability, carbon emission, general pollution and groundwater pollution etc.
“We should remember that India has set its sights on becoming energy independent by 2047 and achieving net zero by 2070. So net zero cannot be achieved unless each industry and each sector contributes to it. “We are very focused on green growth. Carbon intensity has to be reduced and therefore each one of the sectors will have to contribute to this,” she said. Energy efficiency and renewable energy commitments of India are also very important, she said, adding, India Inc should keep that in mind the Net Zero goal of India and 500 gigawatts of installed electricity capacities from non fossil fuel sources.
The Hydrogen Mission is also something which she urged industry to keep in mind. The government has approved a Rs 19,744-crore incentive plan to promote the manufacturing of green hydrogen in the country in a bid to cut emissions. The National Green Hydrogen Mission seeks to promote development of green hydrogen production capacity of at least 5 MMT (Million Metric Tonnes) per annum with an associated renewable energy capacity addition of about 125 GW in the country by 2030. Highlighting four challenges — sustainability, recycling or becoming circular economy, skilling and technology adoption, she said, if Indian manufacturers focus on these issues, global investors would actively look at parking their money or forging joint ventures with Indian partners in chemicals and petrochemicals industry.
With regard to the industry’s task of addressing the issue of inverted duty structure on some of their items, the finance minister said, inversion on an item if corrected can have collateral somewhere. Inversion of duty is a great concern for industry but it should be in a holistic fashion, she said, adding, she would welcome suggestions in this respect and the ministry will look at them.