The warning signs were visible long before the Ukraine conflict. Years of insufficient investment into oil and gas production resulted in high price, and shortages. With investors keeping away from traditional fuels, the conflict in Ukraine precipitated the inevitable. Energy-dependent India must now insulate its supply chains.
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A serious stocktaking is expected at the ongoing Quad Leaders' Summit in Tokyo, to measure the progress of its wide-ranging list and proposals. In addition to vaccine partnerships, climate change, and connectivity, the Quad must now craft a common strategy for and expedite cooperation in, the economy, higher education, industry, and technology. It will also project unity in the Indo-Pacific region.
The rejuvenated BIMSTEC, with a new charter in hand, is now expanding its ambition and mission. One such area is climate change, which needs greater attention as it will have implications for the Bay of Bengal and beyond. With their unique climate conditions and action plans can together create a model for regional cooperation.
The strength and trust in the India-FRANCE bilateral was evident during the May 4th visit of Prime Minister Modi to Paris. Beyond the difficult discussions on multilateral issues, the partnership has been deepened in several key areas of cooperation, from defence to education, climate, energy, digitalisation and technical collaboration. Energy and digitalisation are two particularly bright spots for future collaboration.
India and France have long been reliable partners, and friends in need. The fifth meeting between the leaders of the two countries highlights the focus on strengthening cooperation in 21st century issues. The India-France Track 1.5 Dialogue, hosted by Gateway House, Mumbai and Ifri, Paris, explored the potential of cooperation in digitalisation and energy transition
The ongoing Russia-Ukraine war has increased global oil prices and highlighted India's vulnerability to price shocks. Green hydrogen is a viable alternative for India to diversify its energy sources and maintain energy security. It will need a concerted effort by government, private companies and start-ups with venture funds focused on green hydrogen.
Last month, the Government of India released its Green Hydrogen Policy with the goal of boosting energy self-reliance and inspiring clean energy transitions. The time is right for the Indo-Pacific economies to finance green hydrogen projects and integrate them into supply chains.
On 16 March 2022, Foreign Secretary, Harsh Vardhan Shringla, delivered the keynote address at the first roundtable of the India-France Track 1.5 Dialogue, co-hosted by Gateway House and Ifri. He traced the achievements of the bilateral, particularly in the areas of digital cooperation and energy transitions. He highlighted the "infinite possibilities" for the India-France partnership given their unique positions in the Indo-Pacific.
India and France have been actively working together to solve various sustainability issues from renewable energy generation to the blue economy and biodiversity conservation. There is so much more to do bilaterally with climate finance and urban sustainability, and multilaterally with the G20. All the ingredients are in place for a robust climate partnership.
On February 17, India launched the Green Hydrogen Policy which facilitates the production of hydrogen and ammonia to replace fossil fuels. Produced from water by electrolysis, green hydrogen offers a way to store renewable energy in bulk. This paper analyses the viability of green hydrogen in India as a vehicle fuel and industrial gas, and makes recommendations for the usage of this clean energy source by companies, entrepreneurs, and policy-makers.