India to bring in new mineral policy to align exploration and development projects – by Ajoy K Das ( – August 15, 2018)

KOLKATA ( – The Indian government is expected to put into play a new mineral policy, possibly before the end of August, aimed at a more investor-friendly alignment of exploration and development projects.

The Mines Ministry, which is the driver of the proposed policy changes, is expected to suggest amendments to the Mines, Minerals Development and Regulation Act (MMDRA) 2015 to align it with the new framework, ensuring a level playing field between investors in mineral exploration and mineral development projects.

Officials aware of the framing of the policy said that with only 10% of the area with established resources being explored and private investments in exploration almost negligible, it was imperative that a new policy should incentivise such investments, as mineral exploration remained “very inadequate both by international standards, as well as [the] requirements of the country”.

One of the key areas being addressed by the Mines Ministry was the grant of nonexclusive reconnaissance permits (NREPs), which, since introduction in 2015, has found few takers among private investors.

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