Government to spend Rs37.97m on appraisal of coal reserves

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Rs37.97m to be spent on appraisal of coal reserves

Islamabad: The government will spend Rs37.97 million more on the appraisal of huge coal reserves confirmed by the Geological Survey of Pakistan (GSP) in 2014 after extensive drillings.

“The government has already released Rs131.619 million in the current fiscal year, while Rs37.97 million has been allocated for the year 2017-18 for appraisal of the newly discovered coal resources in Badin and its adjoining areas of southern Sindh,” officials in the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources told APP.

According to the GSP, the coal deposits were estimated to be over one billion tons. “The coal is of good quality and high heating value,” the officials said, adding there were substantial deposits of gold, copper and more than 200 million tons of iron ore.

However, these could not be exploited or utilised due to lack of infrastructure and technology. Efforts were also being made for exploration of tertiary coal in the Central Salt Range, Punjab, aimed at meeting the growing domestic energy demand and increasing power generation.

Sources said exploration of oil, gas, mineral and coal resources was being undertaken on a regular basis, which contributed significant discoveries, especially of oil and gas.

Recent geological assessments have shown that 186 billion tons of coal reserves exist in different parts of the country, which could be used as a primary and inexpensive source of power generation.