Ahead of the Union Budget, the apex industry body for biodiesel has sought continuation of central excise exemption and requested the Centre to introduce a national policy to mandate usage of the green fuel. Biodiesel Association of India (BDAI), in its pre- budget memorandum to the Government, has said India needs promotional policy and favourable taxation rates for the green fuel.
“At present, the use of biodiesel is completely voluntarily and there is no mandate/obligation on the polluters to reduce the emission. A national policy that mandates the use of green fuels is urgent need of the hour. Any tax on biodiesel will discourage the users and kill this industry,” BDAI President Sandeep Chaturvedi said in a statement.
The BDAI called upon the Finance Ministry for continuation of Excise Duty exemption on Biodiesel (B-100) and its inputs even after April 1, 2017 till notification of revised National Biofuels Policy.
The Association said promoting green fuel biodiesel would go long way in curbing vehicular emission and to protect environment. “The states are required to declare a promotional VAT rate for biodiesel blending. Biodiesel, being a green fuel, should not be taxed at par with high speed diesel (HSD) after blending. The state should be more sensitive and take responsible steps towards environmental protection for larger public good,” he said.
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BDAI has been urging the Government for amending the biofuels policy of 2009 to achieve the national target of reducing crude imports by 10 per cent. “While the ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas has been gearing up the blending and distribution networks across the country there is an urgent need for policy support in term of availability of feedstock to meeting the huge demand for biofuels,” he said.
Chaturvedi said the industry is geared up to deliver 3mn tons biodiesel by 2019 and this will provide half a million direct jobs and one million jobs to ancillaries. BDAI has been requesting State Governments to devise policies for promoting green fuel blending and implementation of the pending national policy on bio-fuels for reduction in particulate emission from heavy vehicles/industries.