NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India will need to import 165 million tonnes of coal in 2013/14 to meet a supply shortfall, the state minister for coal said, as local availability of the fuel which runs more than half of the country's power generation will continue to lag demand.
India, the world's fourth-biggest importer of coal, is estimated to produce 604.55 million tonnes of the fuel in the year to March 2014, Pratik Prakashbapu Patil told MPs on Monday, in a written reply to tthe Rajya Sabha.
Demand in the world's third-largest producer is estimated at about 770 million tonnes, he said.
"Thus the gap estimated of 165.14 million tonnes of coal will need to be met through imports," Patil said.
(Reporting by Malini Menon; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)