India’s largest power producer, National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC), has set a target of mining 10.4-million tonnes of coal from its captive mines during 2019/20.
According to a company statement, NTPC had set the coal production target in its memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed with the Power Ministry, which also stipulated that the utility would aim to produce 310-billion units of electricity and commit to capital expenditure of about $2.85-billion during the financial year.
During 2018/19, NTPC, which has set up a separate mining division for its captive mines, had achieved coal production of 6.8-million tonnes to partly meet demand of its aggregate installed power generation capacity of 55 125 MW. According to analysts, the company was expected to commission aggregate generating capacity of 5 000 MW during the current financial year.
However, in a conference call with investors, NTPC had stated that its incremental coal requirement to achieve higher electricity generation would be about 18-million to 20-million tonnes of which the utility would need to import about 11.9-million tonnes during the current financial year, up from five-million tonnes during 2018/19.
NTPC has been allotted coal blocks – Pakri-Barwadih, Chatti-Bariatu, Kerandari, Dulanga, Talaipallo, Chatti-Bariatu (South), Banai, Bhalmunda and Mandakini B – for captive mining to feed its thermal power plants. These blocks have estimated reserves of seven-billion tonnes with production capacity of 107-million tonnes a year. According to company officials, in the short term, the plan is to rapidly ramp up production from its Pakri-Barwadih and Dulanga captive mines and bring more blocks into production in the coming years to secure at least 33% of its total thermal coal requirement from its own captive mines by 2030.