Millennium Post

Power producers' coal imports up 17.6% to 52.48 MT in Apr-Dec

New Delhi: Coal imports by power producers in the country rose by 17.6 per cent during April-December this fiscal to 52.48 million tonnes compared to 44.64 million tonnes a year ago, according to a Central Electricity Authority data.

The data also showed that the surge in dry fuel import, recorded during first nine months of this fiscal, was mainly due to higher consumption by firms like Adani Power and state-owned power giant NTPC, among others.

Adani Power's Mundra plant alone imported 12.83 million tonnes of coal during the first nine month of this fiscal, a growth of 45.7 per cent over 8.81 million tonnes in the same period a year ago.

However, the coal imports by Adani's Udupi plant declined by 47.8 per cent to 0.99 million tonnes in April-December this fiscal as against 1.91 million tonnes in the year-ago period.

The coal imports by NTPC also rose six fold to 1.9 million tonnes in first nine months of this fiscal from 0.32 million tonnes. The imports by Tamil Nadu state firm TANGEDCO also increased to 74.8 per cent to 3.69 million tonnes in the first nine months as compared to 2.11 million tonnes.

Overall, the data showed that the total coal imports in December, 2019 rose to 5.95 million tonnes from 5.54 million tonnes in the same period previous fiscal. Power sector experts said coal imports trend has reversed after almost three years. The imports slipped during the last three years since 2015. Power producers especially who have set up imported coal-based plants faced issues due to rise in the dry fuel prices following change in regulations in Indonesia.

Producers started importing coal after apex court last year allowed pass through of the higher costs of fuel to consumers.

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