Coal India Limited (CIL), the largest coal producer in the world, is planning to invest Rs 910 billion by the financial year 2025-2026 to diversify its business. The move is aimed at reducing the company’s dependence on coal and expanding into areas such as renewable energy, aluminium, and solar manufacturing.
CIL’s diversification plans include setting up 5000 MW of solar power projects, establishing an aluminium business, and exploring opportunities in the manufacturing of lithium-ion batteries, among other things. The company is also looking to enter into the manufacturing of coal-to-liquid and coal-to-gas products and is evaluating opportunities in the coal-bed methane space.
The decision to diversify comes as the demand for coal continues to decline globally, owing to increasing concerns about climate change and the growing popularity of renewable energy sources. Additionally, India has set a target of installing 450 GW of renewable energy capacity by 2030, which has led to a surge in demand for solar power projects.
CIL’s diversification plans will not only help the company reduce its dependence on coal but will also enable it to leverage its existing infrastructure, expertise, and resources to enter into new businesses. The company has already taken steps in this direction by forming a joint venture with NLC India to set up a 3,000 MW solar power project in the state of Tamil Nadu.
Moreover, CIL has identified 24 areas for diversification, including aluminium, fertilisers, and coal-bed methane, among others. The company has also sought expressions of interest from global companies for the manufacture of lithium-ion batteries.
In conclusion, CIL’s decision to diversify its business is a significant move that highlights the changing dynamics of the energy sector. With the world moving towards renewable energy sources, companies such as CIL need to adapt and embrace new opportunities to remain competitive. The company’s diversification plans will not only help it reduce its dependence on coal but will also enable it to expand into new and exciting areas, such as solar power projects, aluminium manufacturing, and lithium-ion batteries.