India, the world's third largest producer of coal, imported 212.103 million tonnes (MT) of dry fuel worth over Rs1 lakh crore in the last fiscal, the highest ever in terms of value and quantity.
Coal imports in the financial year 2014-15 were at 212.103 MT, an increase of 27 per cent over the previous year, the provisional coal statistics of 2014-15 released by the coal ministry said.
Of the 212.103 MT of coal (worth Rs1,04,524.1 crore), non-coking coal import was 168.388 MT, while coking coal import was 43.715 MT, it said.
The coal import during 2013-14 was at 166.857 MT (Rs 92,329.2 crore) while in 2012-13 it was 145.785 MT (Rs86,845.5 crore) In 2011-12, the country imported 102.853 MT (Rs78,837.6 crore) of coal while in 2010-11, the import stood at 68.918 MT (Rs41,549.6 crore).
In 2009-10, 73.255 MT of coal (Rs39,180.0 crore) was imported and in the previous fiscal 59.003 MT (Rs 41,340.8 crore) of coal was imported (See: Rise in Indian coal output not helping global glut).
Coal secretary Anil Swarup said that coal imports dropped by 27.16 per cent to 12.6 MT in September from a year-ago period on the back of rise in domestic production.
Coal India accounts for over 80 per cent of the domestic coal production and is targeting one billion tonnes of coal production by the 2019-20 fiscal.
The government had earlier said it was expecting that one billion tonne output target will enable it to stop imports of thermal coal in two and a half years, which will soften pressures on current account deficit.