Being a mineral rich country and having advantageous geographical conditions, India is economically empowered. The Government of India is implementing policies which will bring transparency in the system and also provide the much required impetus to the Mining Industry. Mining contributes around 2-2.5% to India’s GDP. In India, there are about 3,844 operational mining leases, out of which only 1,800 are functional. The Government plans to raise the annual mineral production in order to increase the Mining Industry’s contribution to India’s GDP.

The Offshore Areas Mineral (Development and Regulation) Act 2002 (OAMDR Act) currently does not permit live auctions of mineral reserves (apart from crude oil and different hydrocarbons) situated in territorial waters, continental shelf, exclusive economic zone and other maritime zones of the nation. To promote mining in the nation, the Government may consider amendments to the OAMDR Act in this month to have more transparent mechanisms for allocating offshore mineral blocks. India’s aim is to harness rare minerals in the largely unexplored offshore territories. These offshore regions also contain gold, silver, manganese ore and monazite.

The Indian minerals exploration segment displays an extensive chance for local and global mining companies upheld by the new National Mineral Exploration Policy (NMEP) policy presented by the Government. The policy includes provisions for competitive bidding, revenue sharing and cost reimbursement for unsuccessful miners, which are innovative moves adopted to support the industry and bring in private sector explorers. In order to achieve success in harnessing India’s mineral potential, the Government will also act as a collaborative partner in crucial stages for the entrepreneurs investing in India.

Anil Swarup, Secretary, Ministry of Coal, accentuates the need for Eco friendly Surface Mining and also urges the industry to implement management strategies and technologies that would drive the growth of the industry with minimal impact to environment. An event on event themed, ‘Eco friendly Surface mining –Technology, Challenges & Way Forward’ was organised by NLC India to create a platform for scientists, researchers, practitioners, academicians and regulatory agencies to jointly strategies more environmentally sustainable mining operations.

The FDI in mining has immensely increased in past few years due to Mining Industry regulations and activities. In the coming two years, the Government aims to increase the volume of mined minerals by 30-35% per year and increase the share of mining in GDP by 1%. Many private global companies are now considering exploring the Mining Sector in India. The rise of private sector companies in the Indian Mining Industry will also create opportunities for global mining machinery companies with innovative technologies. The French firm Geovia believes that new technological advancements and digital models of mines are a pre-imperative for better efficiency in the Indian Mining Industry. The company is keen to help firms achieve greater productivity through digital transformation of mines into 3D models. Also the Indian subsidiary of the German Company Bosch has recently introduced a range of connected and smart solutions that they claim would help factories increase productivity and improve operational efficiency in the Mining Industry.

The Atomic Minerals Concession Rules 2016 (AMCR) proposes to reserve all beach sand minerals deposits containing over 0.75% monazite in total heavy mineral for public sector. Private mines that already operate with this concentration of monazite will need to apply for fresh clearances from the Atomic Minerals Directorate for Exploration and Research (AMD). This move restricts Private Sector participation in mining of beach sand minerals and will affect the growth of the sector.

For the next 50 years, India has enough mineral potential to provide long term leases to investors. The strategic location of India in general eases exports. The Modi Government has been hailed for acquiring financial changes, slowly but steadily. The Government is devoted to implement new policies for the Mining Industry. Overall development of the country and upcoming industries like Mining & Metallurgy will benefit from global technological advancement in the coming years.

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