Indian Energy Exchange (IEX) on Monday launched the country's first gas trading platform, the Indian Gas Exchange (IGX), for physical delivery of natural gas. The platform will help foster the government's vision of increasing the share of natural gas in the energy mix from 6 per cent presently to 15 per cent by the year 2030.
The move is part of the government's plan to establish the gas trading hubs and exchanges in the country wherein the natural gas can be freely traded and supplied through a market mechanism. As per draft National Energy Policy of NITI Aayog, $150 billion capital investment is needed in energy sector on an annual basis until 2040.
Established in 2020, the IGX is India's first automated national-level electronic trading platform which provides a neutral and transparent marketplace to multiple buyers and sellers to trade in spot and forward contracts at designated physical hubs.
The IGX commenced its membership drive in February this year ahead of its formal launch. It has 12 members and 300 plus clients so far which includes buyers, sellers and users. The online gas trading platform intends to offer transparency, competitive price of natural gas, 24x7 trade facility, delivery facilitation and ease of transaction to the market participants.
Launching the country's first natural gas exchange, Dharmendra Pradhan, minister of petroleum and natural gas, said it will help the country move towards free market pricing of natural gas. "With this landmark, India is joining the club of progressive economies. As there will be a market driven pricing mechanism, IGX will play a bigger role towards realising a free market for gas," he said while speaking at the virtual launch ceremony of IGX.
By Chitranjan Kumar