NEW DELHI, May 19 (Reuters) - India plans to mandate the use of 1% of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) for domestic airlines by 2025, oil minister Hardeep Singh Puri said on Friday, in a bid to cut emissions from the sector.

Unlike the United States and the European Union, India does not have policies governing sustainable aviation fuel yet. The European Commission SAF mandate is expected to start in 2025 with a minimum volume of SAF at 2%.

Puri said for jet fuel mixed with 1% SAF, about 140 million litres of biofuels are needed. The mandate for SAF could rise to 4-5% if more volumes of biofuels are available, he added.

An Indian panel had suggested for the rollout of 1% SAF in the country by 2025.

The final mandate would require approval by the cabinet, Puri said at an event to receive the country's first local flight powered by biojet.

Private company Praj Industries provided the biofuel, which was mixed with jet fuel by Indian Oil Corp (IOC.NS), the country's top refiner.

IOC aims to set up a plant by 2026 to produce 87,000 tonnes a year of SAF that will cost over 15 billion rupees, its director for research and development SSV Ramakumar said.

Reporting by Nidhi Verma; editing by Eileen Soreng

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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