The government should give subsidies for development of hydrogen fuel to meet the target of one million vehicles driven by the gas by 2020, Planning Commission deputy chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia said on Monday.
"The cost of developing hydrogen fuel are high but it can be negated if government can subsidise. However, we need to decide if subsidies should be given on existing applications to increase scale or on research," he said at a CII conclave.
He said hydrogen technology was not economic at present and unless subsidised, the fuel would not to be commercially viable.
"If we recognise that it is a potential resource there is no harm in using subsidies to jump start it but....It is unlikely to become a plausible solution in energy security if it continued to be subsidised perpetually," Ahluwalia added.
He said one of the ways could be to leverage on existing research and devise a business model was required for successful commercialisation of hydrogen fuel technology.
On the occasion, Minister for New and Renewable Energy Vilas Muttemwar said the National Hydrogen Energy Roadmap had proposed two major initiatives to develop hydrogen-powered engines and fuel cells-based automobiles from two and three-wheelers to heavy vehicles.