New Delhi, Aug 6 :
The government Tuesday said it will auction captive coal blocks to companies for production of steel, cement and sponge iron after their detailed exploration and obtaining necessary clearances.
“The government will endeavour to auction coal blocks after detailed exploration and obtaining necessary clearances to add value to the auction process, enhance bank ability and to ensure timely production from the coal blocks,” said the Outcome Budget 2014-15 pertaining to the coal ministry tabled in parliament.
The coal ministry has offered three blocks for auction – two in Jharkhand and one in West Bengal – for captive use by companies.
“Notice inviting application was issued on February 26, 2014, offering three coal blocks for mining to companies engaged in production of steel, cement and sponge iron,” the document said.
The coal blocks have total reserves of 500 million tonnes.
The government last year allocated 17 coal mines to central and state public sector units.
The coal ministry planned to auction 54 coal blocks with estimated reserves of around 18 billion tonnes.