Coal imports fall

NEW DELHI: India’s coal imports fell for a sixth month in December, a government official said on Wednesday, as the world’s third-biggest buyer of the fuel expands domestic mines to boost output and expand power generation. India shipped in 12.35 million tonnes of coal last month, a 34.3 per cent decline from the same month a year ago. Imports slipped thanks to a jump in production by state-run Coal India, the world’s biggest miner of the fuel that is opening one new mine a month as the government fast-tracks environmental clearances. “Record coal production by Coal India leads to further reduction in imports,” Coal Secretary Anil Swarup tweeted. Coal India’s April to December production grew by a record nine per cent.