Coal India Ltd (CIL) on Wednesday invited bids from bankers and interested parties for acquiring assets abroad, a move that would help the world's largest dry-fuel producer meet shortages as it battles problems in enhancing output.
"Coal India seeks expression of interest (EoI) from investment bankers, owners/owner's representatives for acquisition of coal assets abroad," CIL said.
The bids have been invited by Coal India Videsh, set up with the intent of enhancing the nation's energy security.
Coal minister Sriprakash Jaiswal had said recently that acquisition of coal mines overseas should be done in an aggressive manner to meet the country's energy requirements.
In order to tide over the fossil fuel shortages, the government is also proposing to import coal and pooling domestic and international prices.
Meanwhile, CIL has already started process for assessing the reserves of its mines in Mozambique and has already invited bids for taking up drilling at the blocks.
Two coal blocks - A1 and A2 - at Motaize, in Tete Province of Mozambique, are spread over 200 sq km and their exploration may take over two years, as per CIL.
The demand-supply gap of coal was 161.5 million tonne (MT) last fiscal and is estimated to go up to 200 MT in 2016-17.