The development of the Indian petroleum industry began on a very slow note. It started mainly in the northeastern part of India especially in the place called Digboi in the state of Assam. Until the 1970’s, the production of petroleum and the exploration of new locations for extraction of petroleum were mainly restricted to the northeastern state in India.
However, an important advancement in the Indian petroleum industry came with the passing of Industrial Policy Resolution in 1956, which emphasized focus on the growth and promotion of industries in India. Another major incident was the discovery of Bombay High, which changed the scenario of the Indian petroleum industry drastically. The Indian petroleum industry was sponsored completely by the government, and the management control of the petroleum industry and all its related activity was entirely with the government. The petroleum industry has the most significant role to play in changing the Indian economy from an agrarian economy to an industrial economy.
The adoption of liberalization and privatization in July 1991 changed the situation again. The government started allowing the Indian petroleum industry to go into private hands and also entered into government and private joint ventures. The government also eased the stringent regulation process on the petroleum industry. This gave a tremendous boost to the petroleum industry in India. The industry began to grow at a tremendous pace. The production of petroleum and petroleum products also showed a significant rise.
Along with liberalization and privatization, the overall economy of India grew. Also, the demand for petroleum products increased at an annual rate of about 5.5%. The demand for petroleum and petroleum products still continues to grow, and there is great potential for investors to invest in the sector and gain valuable returns while meeting the increasing demands for the petroleum products.
The petroleum industry in India is particularly favorable for foreign investment because the industry is one of the fastest growing segments, and it has shown a staggering growth rate of around 13% in the recent past. Apart from the tremendous growth rate in the Indian petroleum industry today, it also boasts technology of international standards, easy availability of infrastructure at very cheap rates, high demands for petroleum products, and increased spending habits of the middle-class people. All these factors make investments in the Indian petroleum industry an attractive proposition for foreign investors.
The foreign trade in petroleum and petroleum products in the recent past have registered significant growth. It has thus attracted new foreign investments. Some of the main petroleum products that are manufactured for trade with foreign countries are petroleum gases, gas oil, propane, distilled crude oil, naphtha, ethane, and kerosene.
The petroleum industry has contributed heavily to the manufacturing industry in the country through foreign trade in petroleum products.
Rapid globalization, fast-changing technology, and the changing methods in the way business is conducted have brought significant changes and enormous opportunities for petroleum companies in India to flourish and expand their operation to global markets.
Another very important reason why the Indian petroleum industry is a good option for investment is that the future of the petroleum industry in India promises great potential for development. The fast economic growth of India and the various developmental activities taking place presents India with opportunities in the future to be a dominant player globally in the export of petroleum products.