New Delhi: Power sector is likely to meet only 90% of the 20 million tonnes coal import target this fiscal due to delay in order placements, increasing the misery of many power stations that are running on critical stocks of less than 7 days.
“The imports are likely to fall short of target as the deliveries may not come in time, with only three weeks remaining for this fiscal to end and the orders were placed late,” said a senior power ministry official adding: “Power firms, including major player NTPC, would import close to 18 million tonnes of coal as against the target of 20 million tonnes by March end.”
He said: “When we talk about target, we count delivered quantity and not those which are ordered and still in transit in a financial year. Therefore, power firms may not get the delivery of around two million tons of coal during this fiscal, but they would get it next fiscal resulting in better opening stocks.”
Power firms have imported more than 13 million tonnes of coal so far. It is also known that more than two million tons of coal is in transit and some more orders have been placed.
Power ministry had set a target of importing 20 million tons for utilities including NTPC’s share of 8.2 million tons during this financial year in order to meet the shortfall in the domestic supply of the fuel.
The latest data released by apex power planning body Central Electricity Authority, shows that 36 out of total 77 thermal power stations are running on critical stocks of less than seven days. There are 20 such plants which are running on supercritical stock of less than four days.