Coal India Ltd (CIL) has approved 32 coal mining projects in the current fiscal till January 2021. While 24 of the 32 projects are expansion of the existing projects, the remaining eight are greenfield projects.

The projects will entail an estimated incremental capital of around ₹47,300 crore, the company said in a press statement.

The combined incremental peak capacity of the projects is projected at 193 million tonnes (mt) a year. This will be in addition to the already sanctioned capacity of 303.5 mt a year.

The approval of the projects will enable coal companies of CIL enhance their production in the ensuing years. CIL board and the boards of the respective subsidiary companies have given their nod for the move.

The incremental production by FY24 from the approved 32 expansion and the new greenfield projects would be to the tune of around 81 mt a year.

“Such high number, either in terms of projects or capacity addition, has not been cleared in a single financial year so far,” a senior company official said in the statement.

The company is striving to replace the coal imports through its own coal and any increase in domestic production would play a catalytic role in this effort.

The three subsidiaries of CIL, South Eastern Coalfields Ltd (SECL), Central Coalfields Ltd (CCL) and Mahanadi Coalfields Ltd (MCL) will account for nearly 87 per cent of the total capacity addition at 167 mt a year.

SECL, with six projects at an estimated incremental investment of ₹18,657 crore, accounts for 63.5 mt a year followed by CCL at an investment of ₹7,520 crore for 10 projects of 56.6 mt a year. MCL with three projects would add up to 47 mt a year at an investment of ₹14,057 crore. The remaining (nearly 26 mt a year) would be met through ECL, NCL and WCL.

“Concurrently, in tandem with production the company is also strengthening the rail evacuation infrastructure through setting up rail lines, sidings and first mile connectivity projects in the companies from where the majority of the output is expected,” the official said.