India plans to invite bids from global firms for the first time for coal mining blocks before end-2019, sources familiar with the matter said, a move that would end Coal India Ltd’s near-monopoly for the fuel as the nation tries to cut imports.
Coal is among the top five commodities imported by India, one of the world’s largest consumers of the fuel. Coal imports are surging after the government failed to open the industry to competition, despite having passed a liberalization policy 19 months ago.
The coal block auctions are intended to attract global miners such as Glencore PLC, BHP Group, Anglo American PLC and Peabody Energy Corp. The government aims to allow companies with winning bids to begin development of the coal blocks – which hold proven reserves – by early 2020, the three sources said.
It is not clear when the government expects to see first output from the coal blocks. Ministry of coal did not respond to a request for comment. Read More