With state-owned CIL (Coal India Ltd) not buying out of any coal blocks abroad at present, a Parliamentary panel today said the PSU can still pursue overseas acquisition of mines after detailed study and analysis of the blocks, especially low ash coking coal.
The committee is of the view that this will not only reduce import of fossil-fuel but also open new avenues of mining abroad.
"Considering the existing coal resources in the country, the committee would like the coal ministry/CIL to explore acquisition of coal blocks abroad. They would like to be apprised of any developments in this regard," the Standing Committee on Coal, Mines and Steel in its report tabled in Parliament said.
CIL had acquired prospecting licences for coal blocks in Mozambique in 2009 through its wholly-owned international subsidiary Coal India Africana Limitada.
However, after carrying out detailed exploration, the geological report and mineability report, it was found that the quality of coal in the allocated blocks was inferior and extraction was commercially unviable.
"The acquisition of coal blocks in Mozambique was not cost effective and the prospecting licences were surrendered to government of Republic of Mozambique in 2016," it said.
CIL accounts for over 80 per cent of the domestic coal output.
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