India advances 20% ethanol-blending in petrol to 2023

07 June 2021

The government has brought forward the target date for achieving 20% ethanol-blending with petrol by two years to 2023 to help reduce India's dependence on costly oil imports, according to the official notification. 

Last year, the government had set a target of reaching 10% ethanol-blending in petrol (10% of ethanol mixed with 90% of diesel) by 2022, and 20% doping by 2030. Earlier this year, the target for 20% blending was brought forward to 2025. And now, it has been further advanced to April 2023.

"The Central Government hereby directs that the oil companies shall sell ethanol-blended petrol with a percentage of ethanol up to 20% as per the Bureau of Indian Standards specifications, in the whole of the States and union territories," the Oil Ministry said in a Gazette notification. "This Notification shall come into force with effect from the 1st April 2023".

India is the world's third-biggest oil importer, relying on foreign suppliers to meet over 85% of its demand.

In the current ethanol supply year, which started in October, India plans to have 10% ethanol-blending with gasoline. As much as 4 billion litres of ethanol will be needed for achieving a 10%s mixing ratio. For 20% by 2023, 10 billion (1,000 crore) litres will be needed.

The sugar industry will divert 6 million tonnes of surplus sugar to produce 7 billion litres of the ethanol needed, while the remaining ethanol will be produced from excess grain.