The fiscal year ended March 2013 saw coal imports sky rocket. India's coal imports rose by almost one third to 135 m tones during the year. A big reason for this was the slowdown in domestic output. This is the fifth year in a row when domestic coal output did not even meet the target output set by the country's largest coal producer,
Coal India. As against a target of 464.1 MT for FY13, it achieved only 452.2 MT as production. Unless the company is able to start adhering and meeting its targets, the country's power producers will not have much choice but to import coal. Let us not forget that imported coal is much more expensive as compared to domestic coal.