India prioritizing shift to become natural gas-based economy, Modi says

Prime Minister Narendra Modi speaks to the media inside the parliament premises on the first day of the winter session in New Delhi, India, November 16, 2016. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi/Files

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India is giving priority to moving toward a natural gas-based economy and efforts must be made to raise local production of the fuel while also creating infrastructure to import it, Prime Minister Narendra Modi told an energy conference on Monday.

“Natural gas is the next-generation fossil fuel, cheaper and less polluting,” Modi said in an address at India’s flagship energy event, Petrotech.

“Efforts must be made to increase natural gas production whole also creating import infrastructure to meet the growing domestic demand,” Modi said.

Reporting by Promit Mukherjee and Sudarshan Varadan; Editing by Kenneth Maxwell