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Published:February 10, 2021 1:47 PM

Role of Independent Operators of Gas Pipelines Infrastructure in India

Role of Independent Operators of Gas Pipelines Infrastructure in India

 The government of India is planning to introduce an “independent operator of gas pipeline “for the advancement of natural gas pipeline infrastructure. This system will be helpful for both all-natural gas producers and consumers for easy access to fuel transport infrastructure. The Independent operator of gas will be also known as Transport system of the operator (TSO) or Pipeline system operator (PSO).  The major role of TSO OR PSO in natural gas pipeline infrastructure will manage a transport digital system of  booking pipeline capacity for transport of natural gas from producers to the consumers on payment of a fee, which will be decided by regulator company of gas pipeline such as Gail India Limited. The natural gas pipeline network operating in the country today is operated by six players – GAILIndia), Gujarat State Petronet Limited GSPL, Gujarat Gas Company Limited GGCL, Reliance Gas Transportation Infrastructure Limited RGTIL, Indian Oil Corporation Limited, IOCL, and Assam Gas Company Limited.


In such a multi-operator system, a revenue sharing model may be implemented where all pipeline owners would be allowed to develop a network according to the PNGRB regulations while the Independent operator would work as a shell company, operating the entire network, having equity of each pipeline owner proportionate to the pipeline capacity that the owner entity offers to independent operator of gas pipeline. 


Alternatively, a model where the entry charge would be collected by the transporter, wherever the gas enters a pipeline system, and the exit charges would be collected by the independent operator, who delivers the gas to a consumer, may be implemented. In this model the sharing of revenues would be decided by the independent operator based on a formula. The regulator should start the process of setting up of the framework and infrastructure for such an independent operator system. This type of system may be operationalized with development of the gas grid in next 3-4 years. An independent system operator would help ensure that the interests of all participants are protected. Every Independent natural gas pipeline operator's primary focus will be on operation and maintenance of natural gas pipeline in such a way that it would continuously provide un-interrupted services to customers with utmost reliability and safety without any untoward incident which can adversely impact the environment.

1)Accelerating the pace towards market-based gas economy
2) Independent operator of gas pipeline would be a strong pillar to increase the share of gas in the energy mix from the current 6% to about 15% by 2030. Development and easy access to gas infrastructure would play a key role achieving above target.
3) Independent operator of gas pipeline will drive competition across the value chain and stimulate investments in exploration and production along with downstream infrastructure. Moreover, market-determined and affordable pricing would also boost industrial growth and economic competitiveness.

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