Naveen urges PM to shelve coal price pooling plan

Bhubaneswar: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday urged Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to scrap the proposal of pooling prices of imported and domestic coal which “does not appear to be economically prudent”.
 
In a letter to Singh, the CM said, “The State government is of the considered view that transporting indigenous coal from the pithead coal bearing states to non-coal bearing states and transporting imported coal to the pithead plants, as envisaged in the pooling of prices of imported coal with domestic coal by Ministry of Coal, does not appear to be economically prudent”.
 
The letter further said, “The introduction of the concept of pooling price will unnecessarily increase transportation costs and consequently the power tariff which is certainly not in the national interest”.
 
It mentioned that the extra cost on account of importing high grade coal should be borne by the coal suppliers since they will get the benefit of extra revenue due to improvement in grade.
 
“As the fuel cost is a pass through item, due diligence and cost control by the power generators is of paramount importance. The burden of high cost coal over and above the Administered Price should not be passed on to the consumers,” the letter continued.