The government today said Coal India (CIL) has signed a pact with government of Limpopo,South Africa for jointly identifying,exploring and developing coal mines.
“CIL has executed a Memorandum of Understanding… with organisations owned by provincial government of Limpopo,South Africa to engage in joint initiatives of identification,exploration and development of coal assets,” Minister of State for Coal Pratik Prakashbapu Patil said in a written reply to the Rajya Sabha.
The minister also said that in order to execute the pact,it would be required to set up a subsidiary of the PSU firm in South Africa.
Last year,the government of Limpopo,the northernmost province of South Africa,had approached CIL,requesting the PSU to form a joint venture (JV) with one of its public sector firms for acquiring coal mines there,a top official in CIL had said.
The joint venture would be between the public firm of Limpopo and a subsidiary of CIL,he had said.
“The Chief Minister of Limpopo Government had approached us… asking us to form JV with one of its public enterprises for exploring the coal assets. In this JV,CIL will have majority share while the public enterprise of Limpopo will have at least 26 per cent stake,” he had said.
The PSU has put together a war-chest of Rs 6,000 crore for acquisition of mines overseas.
The world’s largest coal miner has zeroed in on three unlisted overseas coal assets for acquisition.
CIL,which accounts for more than 80 per cent of the domestic coal production,missed its revised 2011-12 production target as it achieved only 435.84 MT as against 447 MT.
The demand supply of fossil fuel was 161.5 million tonnes in the last fiscal.