India thermal coal import is likely to increase
to 145 million tonne (MT) in 2018, and the uptrend would continue in the next
four years, says a report. According to the report by Minerals Council of
Australia, India’s estimated thermal coal import in 2017 stood at 137 MT.
“After several years of declining imports, the
outlook for thermal coal import demand in India is improving due to strong
demand growth and the inability of domestic supply to keep pace,” the report
“Imports for both December quarter 2017 and March
quarter 2018 were significantly higher year-on-year so we expect an increase in
volumes in 2018, which we believe will be sustained,” it added. In 2019,
thermal coal import would be 150 MT, while in 2020 the figure may shoot up to
155 MT, it said.
In 2021, the country may import 160 MT of thermal
coal while in 2022 it is likely to go up to 165 MT, the report said.
Of the 685 MT of coal produced in India in 2017,
640 MT was thermal coal, it said.
“Indian production has grown strongly since 2012,
increasing by an average annual growth rate of 5.1 per cent to 2017,” it said.
Indian domestic thermal coal output, it said,
will continue to grow and is estimated to reach 770 MT by 2020.
“Beyond 2020, we have forecast an average annual
growth of 5 per cent to 2030, resulting in domestic thermal coal production
reaching 1,253 MT by 2030, which would represent almost a doubling of output
from 2017 to 2030,” the report added.