The government is considering allowing power and steel companies to swap their coal linkages among group entities, subsidiaries and special purpose vehicles, in a bid to optimise fuel availability and cut down the restrictive transportation charges.

At present, coal linkages given to companies (mainly in power, steel and cement sectors) are exclusive to a particular project. These linkages are non-transferable even between group companies. “We are examining a proposal on swap/transfer of allocated domestic coal linkages to reduce transportation cost and put domestic coal to best possible use,” said a coal ministry official.