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Coal India intends to enter metal mining

Kolkata, Sep 13 (IANS) Betting on the "core competency" in mining, coal behemoth Coal India Ltd (CIL) is intending to foray into metal mining of iron ore, bauxite, copper and nickel, an official said on Wednesday.

"We want to enter into metal mining like iron ore, bauxite and also plan to acquire some mines...do mining activities abroad in the field of copper and nickel," the miner's Director (Marketing) S.N. Prasad said.

When asked for details of the metals mining, he did not divulge the roadmap.

"We have core competency in mining and with this competency we want to diversify. Mining is the strength area of the company and metal mining industry is one of it," he said.

In the light of the Paris Protocol and consequent changes in the world energy scenario, the miner is looking forward to diversifying its operations towards renewable energy like solar power and clean energy sources like coal mine methane, coal bed methane, coal to liquid and underground coal gasification, following the directives of the government of India.

"We are in the process of identifying the areas where we can diversify," he said.

The miner is in the process of formulating "Vision Document 2030" to decide the future course of operations for sustainable entity in the nation's energy sector.

The miner has planned a capital investment of Rs 8,500 crore for maintaining its volume (coal production) growth in 2017-18.

In addition, the company has also envisaged investment of Rs 6,500 crore in 2017-18 for development of railway infrastructure project, solar power, coal bed methane, revival of fertiliser plants and for acquisitions of domestic coal blocks and coal blocks abroad.

Further, CIL plans to significantly ramp up its investment programme in the next five years.

According to its latest annual report, the miner is also exploring opportunities to diversify to coal-to-chemical business.

--IANS

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