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Odisha ready to auction 17-18 mineral blocks, says Union mines secretary

BS Reporter/Bhubaneswar 10 Aug 18 | 08:36 PM

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Union mines secretary Anil Mukim exuded confidence  on the progress of mineral block auctions in Odisha and the strides made by the state with respect to the District Mineral Foundation (DMF).

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“I am made to understand that 17-18 mineral blocks in the state including iron ore blocks could be put up for auctions. Odisha is a very proactive state in conducting auctions. Collection under DMF has exceeded Rs 50 billion and new projects are getting approved. Moreover, a monitoring mechanism has been put in place," said Mukim.

Odisha has successfully auctioned three iron ore blocks and a couple of limestone deposits. Essar Steel, Bhushan Steel Ltd and Bhushan Power & Steel Ltd have emerged as successful bidders in the online auctions of three iron ore blocks. 

Mukim had a review meeting with R K Sharma, additional chief secretary (steel & mines), Odisha and T K Chand, chairman & managing director of National Aluminium Company (Nalco). The meeting's agenda was made up by issues relating to auctions of mines, environment & forest clearances and ease of doing business in the mining sector. 

The Union mines secretary said more iron ore, bauxite, chromite and limestone blocks will be put up for auctions. The mines ministry is taking all steps to remove bottlenecks and ensure ease of doing business in the mining sector, he added.

Commenting on Nalco's performance, he said, the navratna company has raked in more than Rs six billion net profit in the first quarter and was likely to sustain this robust performance in the fiscal year. 

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