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Govt expects more aggressive auctions for coal blocks

On the third day of auction on Monday, the government said it expects more aggressive bidding for coals blocks as the mines on offer are already producing.

“Certainly one must appreciate that these (mines on offer) are producing mines. So there will be more aggressive bids for these mines as we move towards mines which are not very easy to operate or which are in more remote areas,” Coal Power and New & Renewable minister Piyush Goyal told reporters here.

Three mines which are on offer today are Mandla North, Marki Mangli III and Trans Damodar.

The government is auctioning 19 mines in the first lot. The auction which began last week will last till February 22.

The government had yesterday received 130 preliminary bids from companies like Essar Power, Hindalco, Adani Power and Jindal Power for 21 coal blocks on offer in the second tranche of ongoing auction.

A maximum of 16 bids came for Utkal C coal block in Odisha from bidders including Jindal Power, Essar Power, Sesa Sterlite and Adani Power Maharashtra.

Another block Gare Palma IV/8 in Chhattisgarh received 13 bids from companies like Hindalco, JSPL, Sesa Sterlite and Balco among others.

While the exact value of the bids could not be ascertained, industry estimates suggest these blocks may fetch tens of thousands of crores of rupees in revenue.

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