PM Modi asks coal & mining sector to increase employment opportunities with modern technology & private investment

Coal production in India up by 164.58 MT in 5 years - The ...

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has advised the Mines sector to increase employment opportunities for boosting the economy and working out a strategy to encourage more private participation in the vital sector of the national economy. He has also stressed the need for improving the country’s self-reliance in the production of minerals and their in-country processing. The mineral sector should benchmark its operations to international standards and advised them to prepare an action plan. He exhorted using modern technologies for efficient mining and directed them for reducing delays in obtaining clearances and partnering with states to facilitate an increase in private investment to boost the economy. He gave directions to target thermal coal import substitution particularly when a huge coal-stock inventory is available in the country this year. PM Modi issued the advisories after reviewing the functioning of the mining and mineral sector at a  meeting held to deliberate the potential economic reforms in Mines and Coal Sectors to boost the economy in the backdrop of COVID-19. The discussions involved ensuring easy & abundant availability of mineral resources from domestic sources, upscaling exploration, attracting investment and modern technology, to generate large scale employment through transparent and efficient processes. Auctioning of additional blocks, encouraging wider participation in auctions, increasing the production of mineral resources, reducing the cost of mining and cost of transporting, increasing ease of doing business while also reducing carbon footprint with environmentally sustainable development also formed an important part of the discussions. The issues related to reforms in auction structure, efficient institutional arrangements, the participation of the private sector in exploration and mining, making the public sector more competitive as well as broad-basing the community development activities through the Mineral Development Fund were also deliberated. Expanding and improving evacuation infrastructure for minerals including the use of sea-routes for domestic supplies was also considered. The aspects related to increasing the efficient and environmentally sound first-mile connectivity for coal transport from mines to railway sliding, automatic loading on rail wagons, coal gasification and liquefaction, coal bed methane exploration was also discussed for potential reforms. (Image courtesy to The Financial Express)

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