New Delhi: The Ministry of Coal will put on sale 39 coal mines as part of the 8th round of commercial coal mine auctions on November 15. “The forthcoming 8th round of Commercial Coal mining auctions, in the wake of previous successful auctions signifies the Ministry’s unwavering commitment to propel the sector forward. A total of 35 coal mines will be offered in the upcoming round, comprising 11 under the CM (SP) Act, 2015 and 24 under the MMDR Act, 1957. Among these, 14 coal mines are Fully Explored, while 21 are Partially Explored. Additionally, four coal mines are being offered under the 2nd Attempt of round 7 of Commercial Coal that includes one CMSP coal mine and three MMDR coal mines. Of these, one is Fully Explored, and three are partially explored,” said the Coal Ministry in a statement on November 13.
In order to address the bottlenecks facing investors, the Coal Ministry has this time chalked out mine boundaries after detailed deliberations to make the coal mines more attractive for the prospective bidders. Further, the ministry will also provide ‘Drone Pictography’ of each mine as a part of mine dossier for benefit of bidders.
Union Minister for Coal Pralhad Joshi will be the Chief Guest and will be launching the 8th round of auction. “The launch of the 8th round of commercial coal mining auctions is a significant step towards promoting private sector participation in the coal mining industry and increasing coal production. The Ministry of Coal’s progressive policies have resulted in faster allocation of mines to the private sector and the upcoming auctions is expected to have participations of more new players from the industry,” said the Coal Ministry. The auction will be conducted online through a transparent process, based on the Percentage Revenue Share model.
The government plans to auction the largest number of coal mines in Odisha — 19. Next up is Jharkhand, where seven coal mines are on offer, followed by Maharashtra and West Bengal, where five coal mines each will be up on sale, and three will be up for grabs in Bihar. Out of 39 coal mines on offer, 15 are fully explored while 24 are partially explored.
The coal sector opened for Commercial Coal Mining in 2020. Since then, Ministry of Coal has conducted seven rounds of Commercial Coal Mining auctions, and 91 mines have been auctioned, with peak rated capacity of 221 Million Tonnes per annum.
Ministry of Coal had organised a stakeholder consultation to promote ‘Funding of Commercial Coal Mines in India’ in June this year to ease the issue of financing for coal mines. Another similar programme was conducted by REC Ltd with key industry players along with various lenders. Lenders showed their willingness to fund the coal mine which is evident from the fact that funding of one commercial coal mine has already been completed and funding of two coal mines are under process, said the Coal Ministry.
The Ministry of Coal has developed a portal ‘Single Window Clearance System’ to facilitate grant of clearances and approvals to the Successful Bidders. Also, Project Monitoring Unit (PMU) has been appointed for hand-holding of bidders in getting various clearances.