cil: A first: CIL invites bids to import coal as power demand soars to record high

NEW DELHI: In a first, Coal India Ltd (CIL) has invited bids for importing 2.4 million tonnes of coal to help power generation companies build up fuel inventories for the monsoon.
The CIL on Thursday invited bids for importing coal for the first time, even as India’s peak power demand shot past 210 gigawatts (GW) at 3 pm to smash the previous record of 209.8 GW hit a day earlier.
Reflecting the rising demand, energy consumption – or units of power consumed – also clocked a historic 4,712 million units (MU) on and gross generation across the country reached highest-ever at 4,824 MU on Tuesday as a result of the government’s efforts to ensure 24×7 affordable power for all, power minister RK Singh tweeted.
The steady rise in demand, sustained by continued heat wave due a break in the monsoon and expanding economic activities, amid low coal stocks at a majority of power plants indicate the resilience in the fuel supply chain system in spite of logistical challenges. The increased availability of wind and hydro power is also helping ease pressure on railways for transporting coal.
The CIL’s tender for importing 2.4 million tonnes of coal in the July-September period is aimed at building inventories at seven state gencos and 19 independent power plants. The move follows the Centre ordering states and gencos to import coal for 10% blending with domestic supply. Subsequently, states suggested a single-point procurement to avoid unwanted competition that would have pushed up coal prices further. CIL was then given mandate.
CIL is seeking coal with gross calorific value of 5,000 kilo calorie, which will replace twice the volume of domestic coal.

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