NEW DELHI: Tata Sons Chairman N Chandrasekaran on Thursday urged the government to consider setting up a coal exchange for transparent buying and selling of the dry fuel by multiple merchant miners in line with the existing commodity bourses.
This, he said, would be a major step towards achieving the target of USD 5 trillion economies.
Speaking during the launch of the auction of coal mines for commercial mining here, Chandrasekaran said, "The government should consider the concept of coal exchange as a trading platform for the transparent method of buying and selling coal by multiple merchant miners in line with what exists in the commodity exchanges."
"That is one of the suggestions which I want to make but this will be one of the big stepping stones towards attaining the (USD) five trillion economy," he said.
Chandrasekaran also lauded the government for opening the coal sector for commercial mining and said it would significantly reduce imports and create jobs.
With such reforms, the mining sector can easily contribute 5 percent to India's GDP, he added.
Vedanta Chairman Anil Agarwal urged the government to let the industry adopt "self certification", stating that lot of difficulties are faced while seeking clearances. He also said heavy penalties should be imposed on defaulters.
"It is my request to the minister (Coal and Mines Minister Pralhad Joshi) that except public hearing you should put everything on self-certification. A public hearing is very important," Agarwal said.
Coal bed methane has huge potential, he added.
Agarwal further said commercial coal mining would help create infrastructure and help the people of backward regions to get employment.
The government has put on sale 41 blocks for commercial mining.
Eleven of these mines are in Madhya Pradesh, followed by nine each in Chhattisgarh, Odisha and Jharkhand, and three in Maharashtra.