Coal India profit grows 9%

Calcutta, Feb. 13: Coal India has posted a 9 per cent growth in consolidated net profit at Rs 4,395 crore in the third quarter ended December against Rs 4,037 crore in the same period last year on the back of higher sales.

Net income from operations of the PSU miner stood at Rs 17,325 crore, an increase of 13 per cent over the same period a year ago. Total expenses went up to Rs 13,457 crore because of an increased spending on employee benefits.

"The growth has been on account of a growth in volume. We did not increase prices," chairman S. Narsing Rao said.

Total production increased 2 per cent to 117 million tonnes (mt) from 114.6mt during the October-December period of the last fiscal. Coal offtake rose to 120mt from 110mt in the year-ago quarter.

For the nine months ended December, production stood at 308.91mt against 291.24mt in the same period last year. Sales through e-auction fell 5.34 per cent to 34.24mt.

The miner has set an output target of 464mt during 2013-14. Rao said he was hopeful of meeting the target and urged Indian Railways to provide more rakes to increase offtake. "We have to increase our production by 10 per cent from today to reach the target," Rao said. "We need to have at least 238 rakes per day."

In the third quarter, 190.3 rakes were loaded per day on an average against 171.8 rakes in the year-ago period.

Meanwhile, the deregulation of diesel price for bulk consumers will cost Coal India around Rs 1,300 crore a year. "Diesel price hike of Re 1 costs us Rs 120 crore a year and the increase is Rs 11 a litre. Cost will increase accordingly," Rao said.

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