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India-Italy Will Jointly Explore Partnership in Green Hydrogen, Biofuel Sectors

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar (right) and his visiting Italian counterpart Luigi Di Maio. (Twitter/@DrSJaishankar)

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar (right) and his visiting Italian counterpart Luigi Di Maio. (Twitter/@DrSJaishankar)

After countries like France, the US and UK, now Italy has also agreed to explore partnerships with India in areas such as green energy, biofuels and energy storage

India and Italy will develop partnerships in sectors such as green hydrogen, biofuels and energy storage, a decision taken after External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar met his visiting Italian counterpart Luigi Di Maio on Friday.

The ministers also discussed the situation in Ukraine and the Indo-Pacific and pledged to work together to combat common threats such as terrorism, violent extremism and cybercrime.

Di Maio, after his arrival in India on May 4 for a three-day visit, praised his meetings with Jaishankar as “very productive” in a Twitter post, adding that countries like India are important for peace in Ukraine.

Meanwhile, the Indian minister tweeted: “A warm and productive meeting with FM @luigidimaio of Italy. Noted our expanding cooperation in cyber security, S&T and space sectors. Agreed that increasing interest of Italian companies in @makeinindia & transfer of technology will further advance our bilateral relationship.”

However, in a joint statement, it was noted that concerned about the escalating humanitarian crisis in Ukraine, the two ministers called for an urgent halt to hostilities and emphasised the need for preserving the international order based on the United Nations Charter, with a focus on sovereignty and territorial integrity.

In addition, the statement also highlighted the discussion between both the foreign ministers that include regional and global problems of mutual concern, such as Afghanistan and the Indo-Pacific, as well as cooperation in multilateral organisations such as the G20.

According to the statement, Jaishankar and Di Maio also talked about the whole range of bilateral relations, including progress on the 2020-2024 ‘Action Plan,’ which was adopted in November 2020.

Both parties appreciated the strengthening of bilateral commercial and investment ties and pledged to extend them in new areas of mutual interest, added the statement.

The ministers also discussed the implementation of the India-Italy Strategic Partnership on Energy Transition, which Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched last year during his visit to Italy.

As per the statement, apart from exploring partnership possibilities in areas such as gas transportation, green hydrogen, biofuels and energy storage, both sides decided to co-host an India-Italy Tech Summit on Energy Transition and Circular Economy on November 17 this year in Delhi.

Other Countries Helping India

In terms of green energy, French Ambassador to India Emmanuel Lenain last year stated that France will continue to assist India in meeting its ambitious goal of 500 gigawatts of renewable energy by 2030.

“We all share the objectives to increase the share of renewables in the energy matrix. France will fully support India to achieve the ambitious target set by PM Modi at COP26 in Glasgow,” Lenain said while participating in an international conference on One Sun, One World, One Grid (OSOWOG), organised by the industry chamber CII.

Additionally, the United Kingdom is also supporting India’s clean energy transition by encouraging public and private sector investment in green financing.

To date, the UK has invested around £67 million in solar energy, water, climate change, and other programmes. Furthermore, the Green Growth Equity Fund (GGEF), which received a £120 million investment from both India and the United Kingdom, is currently the world’s largest single-country developing market climate fund.

This has resulted in the addition of 413 MW of renewable energy capacity, the reduction of 1.14 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions, and the creation of almost 53,000 employment.

Similarly, United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is collaborating with the Indian government to assist it to meet its 2030 objective of switching to non-fossil fuels in the power sector and its 2022 national goal of deploying 175 gigawatts of renewable energy.

In addition, the US Department of Energy and its Indian counterpart have formed a public-private task group on hydrogen and biofuels to boost the adoption of sustainable energy technology.

In September 2021 a statement was released which said: “Under the Strategic Clean Energy Partnership (SCEP), the department of energy together with Indian counterparts launched a new public-private Hydrogen Task Force as well as a Biofuels Task Force. These groups will help expand the use of clean energy technologies to decarbonize the energy sector.”

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