India’s top oil firm Indian Oil Corp (IOC) on Friday said it will invest close to Rs 1 lakh crore to raise its refining capacity by almost a third in the next 4-5 years as it saw fuel demand continuing to grow in near future.
Addressing the company’s annual meeting of shareholders, IOC Chairman Shrikant Madhav Vaidya said petrol demand is already back at pre-COVID levels and diesel – the most used fuel in the country – should return to normal levels by Diwali.
“Forecasts by various agencies see Indian fuel demand climbing to 400-450 million tonne by 2040 from the present 250 million tonne. This offers enough legroom for all forms of energy to co-exist,” he said.
To cater to that demand surge, IOC is aggressively rolling out new projects. “These translate into refining capacity expansion of over 25 million metric tonne per annum, including (subsidiary) CPCL, and an investment commitment of close to Rs 1 lakh crore over the next 4 to 5 years,” he said.
IOC operates 11 refineries that convert crude oil into valued fuels such as petrol and diesel. These have a combined capacity of 81.2 million tonne.