PSUs make a beeline for Aussie mines | business | Hindustan Times
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PSUs make a beeline for Aussie mines

National Thermal Power Corp (NTPC), Coal India Ltd (CIL) and International Coal Ventures Ltd (ICVL) — the overseas joint venture company of SAIL, CIL, NTPC, RINL and NMDC — are all set to make inroads into Australia’s energy and mineral sector.

business Updated: Jun 07, 2010 22:56 IST
Anupama Airy

National Thermal Power Corp (NTPC), Coal India Ltd (CIL) and International Coal Ventures Ltd (ICVL) — the overseas joint venture company of SAIL, CIL, NTPC, RINL and NMDC — are all set to make inroads into Australia’s energy and mineral sector.

NTPC, CIL and ICVL have already lined up huge investments to buy coal mines in western and eastern Australia.

“While many big companies from India are already here, investment inflows are expected to increase with the interest shown by NTPC and others in the nation’s energy resources,” said Sujata Singh, Indian High Commissioner to Australia.

Leading Indian private companies such as Tata Steel, Hindalco, Vedanta Resources, Gujarat NRE, Reliance Industries and Petronet LNG already have a presence in the Australian energy sector.

NTPC and ICVL are close to acquiring coal blocks in Australia, said R.S. Sharma, chairman and managing director on the sidelines of Australia-India Energy and Minerals Forum.

“ICVL is close to acquiring a mine in Queensland, which has estimated reserves of 221 million tonnes. The consortium has appointed merchant bankers, legal advisors and technical experts to do the due diligence.

“We (NTPC) are doing due diligence in Western Australia on mines with estimated reserves of 350-400 mt,” Sharma said, adding, the company now bid for the assets.

Asked about investments in these two ventures, he said, “For one mt of coal, an investment of $100-200 million is required.”

NTPC has earmarked a capital expenditure of 29,000 crore for the current fiscal year. The company is scouting for similar thermal coal properties in South Africa and Indonesia.