Millennium Post

‘Coal auction to bring $100-bn for states’

Asserting that investors have no concern about ordinance route being adopted for coal auction, Coal and Power Minister Piyush Goyal said that the entire process would generate over $100 billion in royalties and auction proceeds for various states. “The ordinance has a weight of law. Any action taken under ordinance has complete protection as if it was done within the legal framework of an Act. Therefore, there are no concerns at all,” Goyal said here at the World Economic Forum (WEF).

The Minister, who held a series of meetings with existing and potential investors in the power and coal sectors during his three-day visit, said, “The auction process is already on, people have started registering themselves on the website…. The bidding process will start next month and all mines won in the bid would be legally tenable and can never go wrong. I don’t think there is any cause for
concern for any investor whatsoever,” he added.

Asked about the revenue to be generated from the auction, Goyal said, “The entire revenue that comes out of this auction will either go to the states or to the people of India in the form of lower power tariff…. I believe that the eastern states where most of the blocks are situated, particularly West Bengal, Odisha, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and to a smaller extent Telangana, Maharashtra, MP and Bihar, stand to gain Rs 5 trillion-7 trillion which is over $100 billion over the next 30 years from royalty and auction proceeds.”

“Apart from that, you will see that power tariffs will come down significantly and the benefits that will
be passed on to consumers over the next 30 years would be enormous,” he added.

On the state of the coal sector in the country, the minister said that coal production in India has been stagnating at about 1-1.5 per cent compounded annual growth rate (CAGR)  over the past 4-5 years.

“We came into the government on May 26, 2014 and from June to December, coal production was up by 8.4 per cent. In fact, between October and November, coal production was up 14 per cent over the last year…. Also, electricity generation in the first six months of our government went up by 11 per cent. These are also records on Indian perspectives,” Goyal said.
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