(EnergyAsia, September 4 2012, Tuesday) — In Indonesia, a Thai independent power producer, Electricity Generating (Egco Group), has acquired a 40% stake in a coal mine project, while India’s National Aluminium Company Ltd (Nalco) has cancelled a coal supply deal for its captive power plant.

Egco said it paid US$197 million for the 40% stake in the Manambang Muara Enim (MME) project in South Sumatra from Indonesian firm PT Alam Karya Nusantara which has a 28-year concession licence starting March 2010.

With an established portfolio of coal mining concessions in Indonesia, PT Alam Karya Nusantara began supplying coal to domestic and international customers in 2010.

Sahust Pratuknukul, Egco’s President, said:

“The investment is in line with Egco Group’s strategic plan to expand our business towards the integrated energy business to enhance stability of fuel supply in the long run. Additionally, it will strengthen Egco Group’s presence in Indonesia and we expect it should provide opportunities for growth in the future.”

Separately, Nalco said it has called off talks with Middle East Coal (MEC) for the supply of five million tonnes of thermal coal a year to the Indian firm’s planned 1,250-MW power plant in Indonesia. The plant was designed to supply electricity to Nalco’s proposed US$4-billion aluminium smelter in East Kalimantan province.

Nalco said it decided to explore alternative arrangements after failing to conclude discussions with MEC which had dragged on for over 18 months. MEC, a joint venture between Ras al Khaimah Investment Authority and Dubai’s Trimex group, holds the concession for 1.5 billion tonnes of coal resources in East Kalimantan province.