1 bn tonnes Target Set for Coal Production in 2025-26
· Rail – Coal Link Proposed by NITI Aayog CEO Kant
· Integrated Infrastructure and Coordinated Efforts in Line with PM GatiShakti to Augment Coal Production
· 14 Railway Infrastructure Projects under Implementation to Enhance Coal Dispatch in Chhattisgarh and Odisha
A meeting was organized under the chairmanship of CEO, NITI Aayog to review and discuss the mission of Coal India Limited to produce 1 billion tonnes of coal by 2025-26. Coal remains the primary domestic fuel for India as well as the single largest commodity transported across the country; thus the mining, supply and consumption of coal is central to the growth of Indian economy.
With the thrust of Ministry of Commerce and Industry on the development of evacuation infrastructure and the work being undertaken by Ministry of Railways, Ministry of Road Transport and Highways and Ministry of Ports Shipping and Waterways in that direction, the production capacity of coal is ahead of its domestic demand. In lines with PM GatiShakti, the development of integrated infrastructure with coordinated efforts by all infrastructure ministries lies at the heart of further augmentation of coal production and evacuation capacity through multi-modal connectivity.
As discussed in the meeting, rail remains the dominant evacuation mode for coal with an aim to expand its modal share from 64% to 75% by FY 2030. To cater to the increased coal dispatch in Chhattisgarh and Odisha, 14 railway infrastructure projects are under implementation in lines with GatiShakti principles. The railway line capacity is adequately addressed for coal transportation up to FY 2026. In order to promote coal production by private companies, railways have also taken steps such as reduction in conversion fee from private siding to private freight terminal from Rs 1 Cr to Rs 10 Lac.
Ministry of Railways has also developed Freight Operations Information System (FOIS) to monitor movement of freight trains which also calculates freight and other charges. The Centre for Railway Information Systems (CRIS) also offers Freight Business Data Integration (FBDI) for FOIS that can be used by the customers for integration with their internal MIS networks.
A similar facility called Port Community System (PCS) has been developed by and Ministry of Ports Shipping and Waterways to provide a platform for secure exchange of information between government agencies, terminal operators and the traders. The digitalization across infrastructure ministries shall contribute towards augmentation of coal evacuation capacity of the country.
Further, with the advent of PM GatiShakti NMP, the status and type of roads (national highways/state highways/ rural roads/PMGSY roads) depicting the first and last mile connectivity of coal mines shall also be accessible to the Ministry of Coal and Ministry of Road, Transport and Highways to take necessary steps of integration and capacity enhancement. The Plan will holistically look at the interventions required to be taken for reduction of logistics cost for coal evacuation and thus lead to efficiency gains in coal sector.