ISLAMABAD - President Asif Ali Zardari Monday said that reducing reliance on imported fuels was critical for the country's economic stability, asking for adopting measures on war footings to achieve self-reliance by producing indigenous fuels. During briefing on "Fuel Ethanol Policy" at Aiwan-e-Sadr here, the President said that the recent volatility in oil prices shooting up to over $150 a barrel and environmental concerns had further enhanced the need for developing alternate fuels such as ethanol and bio-diesel. The world was moving fast towards developing new fuel technologies and Pakistan could not afford to lag behind, he said. The President said that indigenously produced ethanol and bio-diesel could help in achieving import substitution and also enable us escape the hazards of oil price volatility. However, he said that caution must also be exercised so that food production was not adversely impacted. The briefing was attended by PM's Finance Advisor Shaukat Tarin, Federal Minister for Industries and Production Manzoor Ahmad Wattoo, and Secretaries and senior officials of Finance and Petroleum Ministries and Members of the Planning Commission, Chairman PARC and President ZTBL, according to an official release issued by the Presidency. Giving briefing on the subject, Member (Energy) of the Planning Commission Pervez Butt highlighted strategic priorities for replacing domestic gasoline use with bio-fuels over the next few years requiring substantial increase in mandatory bio-fuel use. He said that ethanol is environmentally friendly. It was pointed out in the meeting that although corn is a renewable resource it had lower energy yield than either bio-diesel (such as soybean oil) or ethanol from many other plants. During the presentation, it was informed that Pakistan like many other major sugarcane-producing nations enjoyed significant advantages in producing ethanol, including ample agricultural land, warm climates amenable to vast sugarcane plantations, and on-site distilleries that can process cane immediately after harvest. It was further pointed out that ethanol was being mixed in different proportions in Motor Gasoline in many countries. When 10 per cent is mixed it is referred to as "E-10". He said that the government was considering various measures to promote the use of E-10.