• Amidst weakened demand conditions, the total installed cement capacity in the country is expected to cross half a billion tonne this year as several companies, including UltraTech, JK Cement, Dalmia Bharat and others are in their final leg to add 23 million tonne per annum (mtpa) of production capacity.
  • Currently, the installed capacity is 485 mtpa and with the new additions, it will rise to 508 mtpa in 2020.
  • JK Cement will be adding 4.2 mtpa while UltraTech, will be adding 4 mtpa of capacity followed by Dalmia Bharat at 3.5 mtpa. Ramco Cement will add 2.1 mtpa while Ahmedabad based Sanghi Industries and Meghalaya based Star Cement are expected to commission 2 mtpa of additional capacity each. Birla Corporation, Wonder Cement and Ambuja Cement will be adding the rest of the 5.2 mt capacity. Shree Cement is also on the lookout to add new capacities although a final call on the same is yet to be taken.
  • An official statement said 84.40 GW of renewable energy generation capacity has been installed in the country. Another 36.68 GW is currently under implementation while 29.58 GW has been tendered. This takes the total installed and in the pipeline renewable energy generation capacity to 150.66 GW.
  • Bamboo industry in Kerala has found a silver lining after the state banned single-use plastics from January 1. The Kerala State Bamboo Corporation has earmarked Rs 25 crore from the National Bamboo Mission kitty. This will harness rural artisans into projects such as corrugated sheets, setting up of godowns, planting bamboo and establishment of bamboo-weaving centres.
  • In an early sign of economic revival, Tata Steel has reported 24% rise in sales volume in domestic markets to 4.84 million tonne in December quarter against 3.89 million tonne in the same period last year while in Europe it fell marginally to 2.31 million tonne (2.35 million tonne).
  • India’s power ministry has asked for coal-fired power plants around New Delhi, the capital city with the worst air quality in the world, to be given more time to install equipment to reduce emissions, after the year-end deadline for action passed.
  • Days after the government eased the entry of domestic and foreign players in the coal mining sector, the Union Minister for Coal, Mines & Parliamentary Affairs, Pralhad Joshi, said he wants an open market with no policy restrictions. He said that state-owned Coal India would remain the primary player in the mining space.
  • Talking about the repeated concerns about coal shortfall, be it under the fuel supply agreement with Coal India or for stressed assets under the SHAKTI scheme, he said, there is a shortfall and that is why we have opened up the sector. About the SHAKTI Policy… my predecessor Piyush Goyal has done well. It is a good policy. But why are all these policies needed for the sake of coal supply. I think there should not be any policy. One should be able to source coal with ease and from various sources. As far as the power sector is concerned, coal stock at power plants has been rising for three months and stands at 32 million tonnes now. So there is no issue on supply side.