Report Summary The lockdown imposed across the various countries due to the novel COVID-19 outbreak has had a cascading effect on the coal sector. There was a significant drop in India’s coal import volumes due to both demand and supply-side factors.
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Due to the decline in power demand and closure of industries during lockdown the coal imports have suffered a big blow
The lockdown imposed across the various countries due to the novel COVID-19 outbreak has had a cascading effect on the coal sector. There was a significant drop in India’s coal import volumes due to both demand and supply-side factors. India’s coal import in March stood at 15.74 million tonnes (MT), which means a decline by 27.5% in comparison to last year. The major reason for the decline in coal imports is due to restrictions imposed at various ports in the wake of coronavirus outbreak in the country and also due to the declining demand of the thermal power plants as the renewable plants are given must-run status. The government has mandated State-owned CIL to replace at least 100 million tonnes (MT) of imports with domestically-produced coal in FY 21, this has been done in the wake of government plans to bring avoidable coal imports to zero by 2023-24. CIL has already started to connect with non-regulated sectors like sponge iron, cement & aluminium who import coal for blending purposes or direct use, to meet their fuel requirement domestically through its e-auction schemes to decrease foreign exchange costs.
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