As part of the program, roughly $10 billion is slated to fund railways— a critical element for transporting Colombia's stranded coal reserves to international markets.
Hoping to ride Colombia's infrastructure wave is junior coal developer New Colombia Resources (OTC PINK:NEWC) who preparing a pre-feasibility study for a rail project to move metallurgical and thermal coal from its La Tabaquera project in central Colombia to ports in the north. The goal is to submit the study to Colombia's National Infrastructure Agency in the hopes of partnering with government to build the project.
Companies like Ascot Resources (ASX:AZQ) may also benefit from Colombia's infrastructure build. Ascot's Titiribi Coal Project southwest of Medellin lies in a prolific coal district. But one that has never had good access to export markets and has seen its coal used mostly for lower-value domestic markets.
Billions of Tons in BangladeshThe government of Bangladesh is also realizing it needs infrastructure in its coal regions. The country's northern tip hosts at least five giant coal fields with resources estimated at greater than 3 billion MT. However, infrastructure is a challenge that has left this hefty resource all but undeveloped. There are calls for that to change. At a seminar last week to discuss the government's Power System Master Plan—a roadmap for the nation's energy needs through to 2030—speakers noted that coal must a major part of Bangladesh's energy mix. In a presentation, Dr. M. Tamim—former energy advisor to the national government—said that Bangladesh is running on short on natural gas, and therefore must look to coal to fill at least 50 percent of its energy demand by 2030. He noted that infrastructure development is key to unlocking the country's coal, including port, rail and inland waterway access. A push to blaze a trail to Bangladesh's coal reserves could be good news for GCM Resources (LSE:GCM). The company holds the Phulbari coal project in the north, containing 572 million MT of thermal and metallurgical coal.