NEW DELHI: Coal India may import 10 million tonnes of coal this fiscal to meet the obligation of supplying a minimum assured quantity of fuel to power companies under the Presidential directive, its CMD-designate S Narsing Rao said on Sunday.
“If required, Coal India (CIL) may import 10 million tonnes (MT),” Rao who is heading state-run Singareni Collieries, at present said.
Rao said the company will first see as to how much it can increase its production and then “will do imports if that is inevitable.”
The development comes in the wake of the government issuing a Presidential directive to the Maharatna firm on April 3 to sign fuel supply agreements (FSAs) with the power producers assuring them of at least 80 per cent of the committed coal delivery.
Rao said given the present position the company can easily assure 60 per cent of the committed supply and would take all steps to enhance production. In case, it is not possible then the imports “would be roughly 10 MT”.
Rao, who will take the charge of the company shortly, said the PSU would weigh various options of importing coal that will include direct imports, if required.
He added that apart from imports, the company may also think of diverting coal meant for e-auction to power firms.
The company is already battling on several fronts including delays in getting regulatory clearances for expansion and has missed the target in the just-concluded fiscal by recording 435.84 MT against a revised target of 447 MT.
The PSU has fixed the output target at 470 MT for the current fiscal. Talking about the present target, Rao said that in view the past performance of the firm the “production target of 470 MT does not look to be good enough”.
“470(MT) itself is a tall number given their past performance. That is around 35 MT incremental. I do not think that in any particular year they did so much,” he said.
However, he added that the state-run company will not leave any stone unturned to meet it.
The PSU is the world’s largest coal producer and accounts for 80 percent of the domestic production.
It’s production is almost stagnant for the last three years.