Millennium Post

Govt looks to save Rs 21,000 cr in coal mine auctions

Creating a major breakthrough, West Bengal government is going to save nearly Rs 21,000 crore for the next 30 yrs by introducing transparency in selecting Mine Developer and Operator contract for its 2 coal mines. 

Calcutta High Court’s Justice, Nishita Mhatre, rejected the petition of Bengal Emta Group, against the tender of West Bengal Power Development Corporation (WBPDCL) to give mining contract for its 2 allotted coal blocks - Panchmarah North and Barjora North. 

WBPDCL has gone ahead for tendering of mining contract for these two coal blocks and received nearly 33 per cent less price than the earlier regime practiced since Left Front govt. Bengal Emta were supplying coal to WBPDCL at Rs 1,250 average, through a nomination and joint venture route and through this new tendering process, WBPDCL has received a bid for Rs 770/- per tonne.

The two coal blocks have been in function since the last 30 years and 18 years respectively and WBPDCL will be saving nearly Rs 700 crore per year. Considering the total life of the mines an average of Rs 16 million tonne per year, WBPDCL would be saving no less than Rs.21000 crore in the next 30 yrs. West Bengal government has got another 3 coal blocks which will go for tender shortly.

WBPDCL, after the termination of earlier arrangement, was taking coal directly from Coal India Ltd whose price is more than their earlier joint venture partner and it has affected the bottom line of the company very badly as nearly Rs.5000 crore was spent only to procure coal for their power production.

Once WBPDCL starts its own coal production from these blocks, it is going to improve the bottom line and they are also planning to improve the Plant Load Factor from 65% to 85% which will further improve their top line also.

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