Millennium Post

Coal-based power plants’ April-July fuel imports soar to 30 million tonnes

Coal-based power projects in the country imported about 30 million tonnes of the dry fuel in April-July this fiscal.

As many as 27 projects using domestically produced coal purchased 14.6 million tonnes of the fuel from overseas until 31 July due to a shortage of supplies at home, according to Central Electricity Authority data. Their imports for the current fiscal are estimated at 50 million tonnes. Power plants designed to use imported coal received about 15 million tonnes of supplies from overseas during the period.

Their target for 2013-14 is 32 million tonnes. About 82 million tonnes of coal imports are needed this fiscal to meet the requirements of power plants using indigenous coal and projects relying on imported fuel.

As much as 630,000 tonnes of coal stockpiled at ports is yet to be lifted by companies, the data showed.NTPC, the country's largest power producer, which has a demand of 16.6 million tonnes of imported coal in the current year, received 3.7 million tonnes of the dry fuel. Adani Power met a third of its total demand of 9 million tonnes for its imported coal-based plants. The company has already imported 3 million tonnes of coal. One project of the company that runs on domestic coal has met almost all of its demand of 1 million tonnes through imports.

Tata Power's 4,000 MW Mundra ultra mega power project (UMPP) in Gujarat, which operates on imported coal, received 3.2 million tonnes of its total requirement of 7.2 million tonnes.

Meanwhile, Coal India, the primary supplier of the fuel to power generating stations, plans to invest Rs 5,000 crore in the current financial year, mainly to increase output.
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