Indian mining laws target coal

A PROPOSED mining bill which seeks to regulate and boost investment in the Indian mining industry could see coal companies forking out 26% of profits to the government.
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Lauren Barrett

The Wall Street Journal said the mining laws would make mining leases freely transferable and would be handed out via bidding.

The laws would also introduce automatic mining approvals once a discovery is made following exploration.

This compares to current rules which require companies to seek separate approval for prospecting, surveying and mining.

However, the proposed bill could hit coal companies the hardest, with media reports stating coal miners will be slugged 26% of profits.

The WSJ said coal companies would have to pay up under the new law due to the government seeking a profit percentage, which would be put towards a fund for project-displaced people.

While the government believes the law will boost investment, representatives from industry bodies are more sceptical.

Federation of Indian Mineral Industries secretary general RK Sharma reportedly told the WSJ, “the doubling of royalty payments will make it unattractive for the private sector to invest in mining.”

According to the WSJ the bill is being put through parliament in December.

The new mining law’s introduction into India will be dependent on approval from the government.

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