Coal India Limited (CIL), an Indian Government-owned Coal mining and refining corporation has planned to invest an estimated ₹ 19,650 Crore to strengthen its rail infrastructure in order to boost evacuation of Coal.
Coal India plans to increase Coal evacuation capacity by an additional 330 million Metric Tonnes per annum (million MTPA) by FY 23-24.
How Coal India Plans to Invest ₹ 19,650 Cr to Increase Coal Evacuation
Coal India shall make this ₹ 19,650 Cr investment through two routes: by investing in railway lines through subsidiaries and by investment in rail infrastructure through JV companies
Coal India to Investment ₹ 7,994 Cr on three Railway Lines
Coal India shall be investing approx. ₹ 7,994 Cr on construction of three important railway lines for its subsidiaries, Central Coalfields Ltd. and Mahanadi Coalfields Ltd. Through these rail lines Coal India plans to add 170 million MTPA of Coal transportation capacity.
Some of the Rail-Line Projects Already Under Progress
Under Central Coalfields Ltd.: The Tori-Shivpur railway line (double) was commissioned in December 2019 with a capacity of 32 million MTPA. Tripling of this Tori-Shivpur railway line is now under process. This will the line’s Coal evacuation capacity to 100 million MTPA.
Under Mahanadi Coalfields Ltd.: The Jharsuguda-Barpali-Sardega (single line) was commissioned in 2018. Now construction work for doubling of this line along with loading bulb at Barpali and a flyover complex at Jharsuguda are underway. Further, dovetailing of Sardega, 20 MTPA and Lajkura, 15 MTPA to this rail connectivity is underway which would additionally lift Mahanadi Coalfield’s transportation capacity by 65 MTPA.
Coal India Formed four Rail JVs with a Capital Outlay of ₹ 11,656 Cr
The four rail joint ventures are Jharkhand Coal Railway Ltd. (JCRL), Chhattisgarh East Rail Ltd. (CERL), Chhattisgarh East West Rail Ltd. (CEWRL) and Mahanadi Coal Rail Ltd (MCRL). These four rail joint ventures are in various stages of progress. In these joint ventures CIL holds 64% stake and the rest 36% is with the Rail PSUs such as IRCON, Indian Railway Finance Corporation Limited (IRFC) and respective states.
Coal India Making Aggressive Investments in Rail Infrastructure
The investment planned by Coal India is against the backdrop of a Coal shortage that had raised concerns in India recently.
The fuel (Coal) stocks at Indian power plants had depleted to 7.23 Million Metric Tonnes (MMT) on 8th October 2021. India’s power plants burn around 1.85-1.87 million MT of Coal every day to generate electricity.
Rail infrastructure is essential to boost Coal evacuation, and it is important to have a robust Coal transport mechanism in place to match with increased volumes of production in coming years.
About Coal India Limited Coal India Limited is an Indian Government-owned Coal mining and refining corporation. It is under the ownership of the Ministry of Coal, Government of India headquartered in Kolkata, West Bengal, India. It is the largest coal-producing company in the world and a Maharatna public sector undertaking.