State-owned Coal India Ltd (CIL) reported 11.2 per cent decline in production at 41.43 million tonne in May. The company had produced 46.69 million tonne of coal in May 2019.
In a statement the PSU said "CIL as whole produced 41.43 million tonne (MT) of coal in May 2020."
It further said amid a crimped demand for coal, in what would be an encouraging sign for CIL, coal offtake was up at 39.95 MT in May compared to 39.06 MT in April.
Coal sales have expanded by 0.9 MT in May, it said.
Overburden removal (OBR) growth for May 2020 "was 21 per cent at 124.59 M.Cu.M OB removal, compared to year-ago month, as CIL laid aside an additional quantity of 21.52 M.Cu.M extraneous matter during the referred period," it said.
This bodes well for the state-owned coal mining behemoth as OBR is an important performance parameter that removes top soil and lays bare the coal seams for future mining in opencast mines, it said.
"This is a positive sign and secures options for our future coal output at short notice, once demands picks up," said an official of the company adding "all our coal producing subsidiaries have posted growth in OB removal during May'20 compared to the same month last year."
Coal India accounts for over 80 per cent of domestic fuel output.