New Delhi: Public sector giant Steel Authority of India Ltd (SAIL) is exploring the possibility of jointly acquiring, with Coal India Ltd (CIL), equity stake in coking coal mines abroad to meet its future requirements.
SAIL expects these requirements to shoot up to a level of 22.5 million tonnes by 2010.
In a written reply to the Lok Sabha, Union minister of state for steel Akhilesh Das said SAIL would require 22.5 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) washed coking coal by 2010, whereas the present availability of washed coking coal from indigenous sources is around five mtpa.
The company may join hands with CIL to acquire overseas coal blocks.
In reply to another question, the minister said there is no specific proposal under consideration of the company for taking over steel companies abroad.
“There is currently no proposal from SAIL to start an ancillary company called SAIL Videsh,” he said.
The minister said the United Progressive Alliance government was actively considering the issue of restricting iron ore exports after the committee of secretaries, which examined the matter, could not reach a consensus.
SAIL has envisaged an investment of Rs48,000 crore for increasing its production capacity to 24 million tonnes per annum by 2010 from the present 14 million tonnes.
SAIL, India’s largest integrated iron and steel producer, has five integrated plants and three special steel plants.