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Coal ministry to conduct auction of 39 mines in five states on Nov. 15

The Ministry of Coal will initiate the 8th round of auctions for commercial coal mines on November 15, it said in a statement on Monday. The ministry's plan includes the auction of 39 mines spread across five states: Bihar, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, Odisha, and West Bengal.


This auction is anticipated to mark a “significant leap in the coal sector, advancing India towards self-sufficiency in coal,” as stated by the Coal Ministry.


The commercial coal mining sector was opened in 2020, following successful auctions initiated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Since then, the Ministry of Coal has conducted seven rounds, auctioning 91 mines with a peak rated capacity of 221 million tons per annum.


Coal extracted from these mines can be utilized for self-consumption, sale, or other purposes.


In the upcoming round, 35 coal mines will be open for bidding, with 11 falling under the CM (SP) Act of 2015 and 24 under the MMDR Act of 1957. Among these mines, 14 are fully explored, and 21 are partially explored. Additionally, four coal mines are being offered again in the second attempt of round 7.


Meanwhile, the coal ministry said it plans to increase the production of dry fuel to ensure ample availability for thermal power plants. This includes opening new blocks, expanding mine capacity, and increasing production from captive commercial mines.


The ministry emphasized its commitment to enhancing all operational components and outlined clear plans for further development. Production goals for 2027 and 2030 are set at 1,404 million tonnes (MT) and 1,577 MT, respectively, compared to the current production level of about one billion tonnes per annum. The coal supplied to domestic coal-based power plants for the current year is approximately 821 MT.


The growth in power generation for domestic coal-based plants recorded an 8.99 percent increase, while coal production showed a 13.02 percent year-on-year growth. Over the last three months, the demand for thermal power has surged by over 20 percent compared to the previous year.

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