Kolkata, Feb 24: The Uday scheme for reviving debt-ridden power distribution utilities is one of the solutions to tackle the surplus production of Coal India which stands at 40 million tonnes, according to a senior official.
"Once financial position of the discoms improve with Uday scheme they will draw more power which in turn will lead to higher demand for coal in six months," Coal secretary Anil Swarup said here today on the sidelines of 6th Asian Mining Congress organised by MGMI.
Uday aims to restructure the consolidated debt, in excess of Rs 4.3 lakh crore debt, of state discoms. "We are trying to supply more coal to power companies and trying to ensure that import demand from the companies in the hinterland is replaced with domestic supplies," Swarup said.
"We must ensure that coal imports come down with the increase in domestic production. This will also help government save a lot of money," he said. Import is down 16 per cent year-on-year and saving could be between Rs 25,000- Rs 30,000 crore for the current fiscal.
Presently, Coal India is faced with a pit-head stock in excess of 40 million tonne mainly due to lower offtake by power companies. Asked about pending coal linkage auction policy, Swarup said it was expected in a month.
He emphasised on cost efficiency as he does not forsee any price recovery in near term due to surplus scenario. A plan has been drawn for 15 coal washeries by 2017 to supply quality coal to consumers, he said.