India sent the First Consignment of Coal to Bangladesh's Rampal Power Plant
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India sent the First Consignment of Coal to Bangladesh's Rampal Power Plant

By IndraStra Global News Team

India sent the First Consignment of Coal to Bangladesh's Rampal Power Plant

On July 2, 2021, India sent its first coal-laden rake (around 4,000 tonnes) to Bangladesh's Rampal Thermal Power Station located at the Bagerhat district in the Khulna division. The 1,320 MW power plant is a joint venture between National Thermal Power Corporation and Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB). 

Bangladesh bound coal is of Grade G-17, having 2,200 gross calorific value (GCV). It is exported by Coal India Limited (CIL) from Syama Prasad Mookerjee Port (SMP) erstwhile Kolkata Port Trust on July 3 and would be unloaded at the Mongala Port in Bangladesh from where it would be sent to Rampal’s captive jetty.

This export comes in the backdrop of CIL lifting the embargo on coal exports under its e-auction sales policy. Now coal purchasers, including traders, can export the coal bought through this route. This assumes significance given that CIL is India’s largest coal miner, with the allocation under spot e-auction and special spot e-auction accounting for 46 million tonnes (mt) of coal in FY21.

According to CIL's press release; "The destination of below 2200 gross calorific value coal purchased under spot e-auction from Dahibari siding of Bharat Coking Coal Limited (BCCL), the Jharkhand based coal producing subsidiary of CIL is Rampal Power Station, Khulna, Bangladesh. This falls under Maitree Super Thermal Power Project - a joint venture between the Indian power producer NTPC Limited and Bangladesh Power Development Board."

About Rampal Thermal Power Plant

Rampal Thermal Power Plant is being set up by Bangladesh India Friendship Power Company Limited (BIFPCL) which is a 50:50 joint venture between India's state-owned National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) and Bangladesh's Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB).

The BIFPCL had signed the engineering, procurement, and construction contract with the Indian Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) in July 2016 for completing the 2X660MW power plant within 41 months or by December 2020. In 2017, the BIFPCL got a loan of $1.6 billion from the Indian Exim Bank.

The construction of the plant started in April 2017, amid a huge outcry at home and abroad by environmentalists, who expressed concerns over the long-term impact of the plan on the biodiversity and ecology of the mangrove forest.

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