Govt launches auctions for Second Tranche of Commercial Coal Mining

Central government has launched second tranche of commercial coal auction on March 25, 2021 following the award given to 19 mines out of 38 in first tranche of auction in November 2020.

Highlights

A comprehensive list of mines will be uploaded along with key technical data.  Following this, bidders will submit their preferences for mines to be included in next round of auction. This will be a continuous process and will result in expediting auction setup. It will also help bidders to plan better and will enhance transparency across the system.

Second round of Auction

In this round, 67 coal blocks will be offered. Out of 67, six are coking coal and rest are non-coking which are used in thermal power plants. Coal blocks are spread across Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Odisha, and Andhra Pradesh. 37 mines have been fully explored and they could be brought to production immediately while 30 are partially explored.

Commercial Coal Mining

Commercial coal mining will help in bringing new investments and boost socio-economic development. It will also create huge employment opportunities in coal-bearing states.

Background

Coal mining sector was opened for private companies in 2020 following which they started entering the arena of commercial mining and sale of coal. Coal sector was opened for Private companies, 47 years after coal mining was nationalised in India. Government had also amended the ‘Coal Mines (Special Provisions) Act, 2015’ to open coal auction for non-mining, MSMEs and foreign companies.

Non-end user

Hindalco, Essel Mining of Aditya Birla Group, Adani Enterprises, Vedanta ltd, Jindal Steel & Power ltd, and several new & non-mining companies like Aurobindo Realty, JMS Mining Yazdani International, Boulder Stone Mart etc have won the bid. About 65 per cent bidders were from ‘non-end user’ category where “bidder is not a direct user of coal”.

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