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Clear policy critical for implementation of alternative fuel roadmap in India: HMSI

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NEW DELHI, Oct 19: Two-wheeler major Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India (HMSI) have said that a clear and stable policy roadmap would be critical for the implementation of the alternative fuel roadmap in the country.

The Japanese two-wheeler major said that while the company remains aligned to the government vision, certain challenges related to fuel supply and price need to be addressed.

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“To derive the many advantages of biofuels, it is important to have a clear, consistent, and stable policy. Policy enablers that can provide reasonable fuel cost and support for localisation would help in maintaining reasonable cost of ownership for successful flex fuel road map implementation in India,” Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India (HMSI) president, CEO & MD Atsushi Ogata said here.

He was speaking at an event organised by the auto industry body Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM).

Elaborating on some of the challenges regarding flex fuel engines, Ogata listed stable supply of high quality ethanol as one of the foremost concerns for the domestic auto industry.

“Stable supply with stable price is the challenge we perceive from the OEM side. Also we need to invest additionally for the flex fuel…it also means additional cost for the consumer,” he said.

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Citing the Brazil case, he noted that the government there gave incentives to promote the flex fuel vehicles Similarly, some incentives in terms of taxation would aid in encouraging the alternate fuel strategy to kick off in the country, Ogata said.

“We at Honda assure to develop products that are compliant with higher blends of ethanol in a stepwise manner complying with the Government road map,” Ogata noted.

India has advanced the target date for achieving 20 per cent ethanol-blending in petrol by five years to 2025.

The government ultimately expects the automobile industry to move towards flex-fuel engines after crossing the 20 per cent ethanol-blending milestone.

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Ethanol extracted from sugarcane as well as damaged food grains such as wheat and broken rice and agriculture waste is less polluting and its use also provides farmers with an alternative source of income.

India is the world’s third-biggest oil importer, relying on foreign suppliers to meet over 85 per cent of its demand.

Achieving E20 blending with petrol by 2025 would help India save foreign exchange by about Rs 30,000 crore per annum while also curbing air pollution.

In line with government policy, automakers are in the process of developing engines that would be compliant to the E-20 fuel.

Ogata said that the Indian government’s decision to introduce higher blends of ethanol in transportation is a great initiative to reduce fuel import dependency and address environmental issues.

The roadmap for ethanol blending in India lays a thorough pathway for achieving 20 per cent to 100 per cent ethanol blending in a phased manner, he said.

Ogata noted that Honda understands flexi-fuel technology deeply and aims to replicate the success story of Brazil in India by developing the best in class flex fuel model line-up for India.

He noted that Honda has sold over seven million flex-fuel two wheelers in Brazil.

“The main success in Brazil is the Government policies, those are supporting localisation and resulting in customer affordability,” Ogata said. (PTI)

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The Hills Times
The Hills Timeshttps://thehillstimes.in/
The Hills Times, a largely circulated English daily published from Diphu and printed in Guwahati, having vast readership in hills districts of Assam, and neighbouring Nagaland, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh and Manipur
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