The Central Government has constituted a panel to formulate a policy on public-private partnership framework with state-owned Coal India Ltd. as one of the partners to increase coal output.

The development comes close on the heels of Finance Minister P. Chidambaram stating in his budget speech that there was a need to devise such a policy to reduce the country’s increasing dependence on imported coal.

“In pursuance of the announcement in the Union Budget, 2013, regarding public private partnership (PPP) policy framework with Coal India (CIL) as one of the partners, a Committee...is constituted,” a source in the coal ministry said.

The nine-member committee chaired by Coal Secretary S. K. Srivastava has representatives from ministries, including Finance and Law and Justice, the source added.

The panel, to be serviced by Central Mine Planning & Design Institute Ltd (CMPDI), will “devise a PPP policy framework...in order to increase production of coal,” the source said, adding, “The committee shall give a report within a month.”

CIL missed its production target last fiscal and produced only 435.84 million tonnes against the revised target of 447 million tonnes.

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