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Last updated: 15 Jun, 2019  

Mining.9.Thmb.jpg Mineral policy will need synergy among stakeholders: Official

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SME Times News Bureau | 15 Jun, 2019

A.K. Nayak, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Mines, said that National Mineral Policy (NMP) 2019, which aims to hike mineral production by 200 per cent in seven years, is a fine document but would need support from all stakeholders to make it a success.

Speaking at 'National Mineral Policy 2019 - A Landscape of New Opportunities' conference, organized by FICCI, jointly with the Ministry of Mines, Govt. of India, Nayak said, "The new policy is a very fine document, but it is up to all of us to make it a blueprint for action. Unless there is complete synergy among all stakeholders like industry, Central and state governments, regulators, it would be very difficult to make a headway."

Highlighting key aspects of the new policy, Mr Nayak said that it focuses on raising the share of mining in the country's GDP through large scale exploration with priority to deep-sea minerals and by assisting in getting the necessary clearances.

"The NMP talks of increasing mineral production by 200 per cent in seven years. It's a very ambitious target. It also talks of reducing the trade deficit in mineral sector by 50 per cent in seven years. Government is conscious of the fact that there is a need to reduce the import bill," Nayak said.

He also highlighted that the new policy has pitched for exclusive mining zones having in-principle statutory clearances and intergenerational equity, among others. Intergenerational equity is basically responsible and sustainable mining so that we don’t exhaust all our reserves and leave nothing for the future generation, he added.

He further suggested that utilizing both high and low-grade minerals with beneficiation technology and by adopting global best practices in exploration, mining, smelting and downstream processing. Creating a consortium of small-scale mining companies for particular categories can help them access both capital and technology, he added.

Tuhin Mukherjee, Chairman, FICCI Mining Committee and MD, Essel Mining and Industries Ltd said that the mineral and mining sector must be identified as an industry and that there should be a simple, transparent and implementable policy.

Rahul Sharma, Co-Chairman, FICCI Mining Committee and CEO, Alumina Business, Vedanta Group said that the mining sector is more like a core sector and the country has enough resources and the time has come to unleash the potential. India has the world???s highest tax structure in mining at 65 per cent which the government has taken into cognizance, he added.

Pankaj Satija, Co-Chairman, FICCI Mining Committee and Chief Regulatory Affairs, Tata Steel Ltd said that the new policy is focused towards sustainable and responsible mining as it also addresses issues related to biodiversity and intergenerational equity for achieving environmental and social goals. However, he added, "Implementation of the policy will be key to make India self-reliant in mineral security."

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