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India to reduce coal import gap by 50 per cent in 3 years: Anil Kumar Jha

Our Bureau Kolkata | Updated on August 23, 2019 Published on August 23, 2019

Anil Kumar Jha, Chairman, Coal India. Photo: Debasish Bhaduri

In FY19, the country produced around 730 mt of coal, while the consumption was close to 965-970 mt

Anil Kumar Jha, Chairman, Coal India, on Friday said that the country could reduce the import of coal by nearly 50 per cent over the next three years.

India imported close to 235 million tonne (mt) of coal in 2018-19. Of this, coking coal constituted around 50 mt of the share. Another 70 mt was imported by power plants located in the coastal areas, as these imports made sense both logistically as well as on the cost front. However, the remaining 115-120 mt of imports can be substituted if domestic production is ramped up.

In FY19, the country produced around 730 mt of coal, while the consumption was close to 965-970 mt.

“As far as coking coal is concerned, India will continue to import so that 50 mt is irreplaceable. Out of the 190 mt of non-coking coal around 115-120 mt of coal can be replaced in the next three years with higher production and better evacuation,” Jha said.

He was addressing a press conference to announce the eighth Asian Mining Congress and the International Mining, Equipment, Minerals and Metals Exhibition to be organised by the Mining, Geological and Metallurgical Institute of India between November 6 and 9.

A majority of the import can be substituted by ramping up the Coal India’s production by around 50-55 mt every year for the next three years.

However, a conducive environment, such as availability of land as well as a favourable law and order situation was crucial for "quantum" jump in production from Coal India, he pointed out.

CIL had produced around 607 mt of coal in FY19 is likely to produce 53 mt more this year, taking the total production to around 660 mt. It is also looking at an incremental production of 50-55 mt each year for the next three years to be able to bridge the import gap.

The country’s largest miner is also aiming to achieve a production of one billion tonne by 2025-26.

Published on August 23, 2019
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