Kolkata: Coal India LTd (CIL) on Monday said it is keen to join hands with power companies to exploit underground mining.
“We have proposed going for joint ventures with power producers who can take up underground mining through the joint venture mode,” chairman-cum-managing director of Bharat Coking Coal Limited (BCCL), a subsidiary of Coal India Limited (CIL), T K Lahiri said on the sidelines of a BNCCI seminar.
“We are also considering vertical distribution of mining rights where excavation at varying depths can be undertaken by us depending upon the risk and the costs we are willing to bear,” he said.
CIL had mooted the idea to NTPC Ltd, the biggest customer of coal in the country. “They had appreciated it,” Lahiri said.
The company is keen on JVs to share the cost for the underground mines development with the coal consumers as coal cost from mines are higher and CIL has failed to realise the same.
Lahiri said, CIL, on an average has been exploiting coal for depth of only up to 120 metres below the surface. The reserve below open cast mines between 120 metres to 1,200 metres has not been touched as it doesn’t have adequate technology while global expertise has not been tried.
“BCCL has now joined hands with foreign technology providers to exploit four mines and the power sector could come forward in the form of joint ventures. They should make JVs for exploiting coal lying at a depth beyond 120 metres and up to 1200 metres,” he said.
Different modalities can be used to determine how the coal output can be shared among the partners, the BCCL head said.