Indian Economy News

All efforts are being made to stop the import of coal by 2025-26; the focus is on producing 100 MT from underground mines by 2030: Mr. Pralhad Joshi

November 15, 2023, marked the beginning of the eighth round of the auction process for commercial coal mines by the Ministry of Coal. A total of 39 coal mines are on offer. The Union Minister for Coal, Mines, and Parliamentary Affairs, Mr. Pralhad Joshi, declared during the virtual auction launch that every effort is being made to halt the import of coal by 2025-26. He added that mass production technologies will be used to increase underground mine (UG) coal production even further, to reach 100 million tonnes (MT) by 2030.

The coal-producing states of West Bengal, Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha, and Maharashtra are home to the mines up for auction. These mines are governed by the MMDR Act and CMSP Act. Four of the 39 coal mines are up for bid under the CMSP/MMDR Act's second try of the seventh round, after just one bid was accepted in the first round. Out of the 35 coal mines available in the eighth round, 16 are brand-new, and the remaining 19 are rollovers from previous tranches.

The Ministry of Coal has implemented several reforms to guarantee that the coal industry expands quickly and can fulfil the nation's increasing energy needs. Mines located within protected areas, wildlife sanctuaries, essential ecosystems, places with a forest cover of more than 40%, densely populated areas, etc. have also been excluded for the eighth round. Some coal mines' block boundaries that had dense populations, a lot of greenery, critical infrastructure, etc., have been modified to allow for the coal mine's early development.

Speaking at the ceremony, the Secretary of the Ministry of Coal, Mr. Amrit Lal Meena, stated that the production of commercial and captive coal mines is growing. He stated that before putting 39 mines up for auction, thorough surveys had been conducted. According to Mr. Amrit Lal Meena, rail connectivity is being expanded in order to facilitate the quick extraction of coal from mines.

Starting November 15, 2023, the sale of tender documents for auction will begin. The MSTC auction platform provides access to mine details, auction conditions, deadlines, and other information. The auction will take place online using a transparent two-stage process based on revenue share as a percentage.

The Ministry of Coal is receiving assistance from SBI Capital Markets Limited, its exclusive transaction advisor for the commercial coal mine auctions, in running the auction process.

Disclaimer: This information has been collected through secondary research and IBEF is not responsible for any errors in the same.