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Ambani Says U.S. Will Be Energy Independent in 5-7 Years

Reliance Industries Ltd. Chairman Mukesh Ambani
Reliance Industries Ltd. Chairman Mukesh Ambani attending the World Economic Forum India Economic Summit 2011 in Mumbai. Photographer: Adeel Halim/Bloomberg

Mukesh Ambani, the billionaire chairman of Reliance Industries Ltd., said that the U.S.’s development of shale oil and gas will make the country energy independent as early as 2018.

“For many decades, we have heard that the U.S. will be independent of foreign imports of energy,” Ambani, whose company operates the largest oil refining complex in the world, said in an interview to be aired today on CNN’s “Fareed Zakaria GPS” program. “Realistically, I can now tell you that it is my judgment this will happen in the next five to seven years,”

Ambani said the “fundamental transformation” in the U.S. energy sector will help drive economic growth this year, according to a transcript of the interview provided by CNN. He said he was “more optimistic than most” about the global economy and that a recovery will begin this year, particularly in the U.S.

When asked what a military strike on Iran would do to the price of oil, Ambani, 55, said that there is “enough spare capacity” in global energy markets to “take care of eventualities,” according to the transcript.

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