Kerala Assembly speaker bats for mineral beach sand mining, LNG pipeline

Kerala Assembly speaker bats for mineral beach sand mining, LNG pipeline

TNN | Feb 22, 2017, 01.49 PM IST
Kerala Assembly speaker bats for mineral beach sand mining, LNG pipeline
KANNUR: Kerala Legislative Assembly speaker P Sreeramakrishnan has said if “we had permitted mining of mineral beach sand, we would have become wealthier but we missed the opportunity”.

“The opposition against the mining was the environmental issues in one or two panchayats, but instead of addressing the problems there and permitting mining in other places, we spoiled the opportunity by opposing it, which could have made us wealthier than Qatar,” he said inaugurating the seminar on the development of Kannur Assembly constituency, organised under the aegis of KILA, here on Tuesday.

Though people of all political affiliations should come forward to join hands in development, development also has a politics beyond party affiliations, and it is natural to have politics in priorities while formulating the development policy, he reminded. Nowadays, in the name of development, there is a corporate tendency to bring all the people’s representatives under their fold irrespective of politics and we have to be careful about it, he added.

At the same time, the speaker also said the opposition against the proposed LNG pipeline between Kochi and Mangaluru is not justified and the plant in Kochi built with an expense of Rs 20000 crore is not yet functional because of this.

Observing that our attitudes about development should change, and also the mistakes should be rectified, the Speaker said the process of development is of multi-level and it is time to evaluate the development in Kerala, which is 60 years old now.

He also said there are two diametrically opposite arguments about the Kerala model development. One group says there is nothing called Kerala model while the other says Kerala model is the ultimate, but these extremist arguments are wrong, he added.

“Kerala model is something which astonished the whole world but it is wrong to say that it is the ultimate, and we have to improve further,” he pointed out, and added that we should ask ourselves if we have succeeded in carrying forward the message put forth by the people’s planning programme.

We are much behind of others in manufacturing value-added products, opined the Speaker, who pointed towards the strides made by Sri Lanka in making value-added products from coconut. Similarly, though we are top producers of rubber, we do not have any major rubber product industry here, said Sreeramakrishnan.

Kannur MLA and minister for ports Ramachandran Kadannappally presided.

The seminar was based on a draft document on the overall development of the constituency. Based on the 12 group level discussions in the seminar, the draft would be finalised and then various government agencies would be approached to get funds for the projects, said the organisers.

Mining Industry is in danger – Part-9

Due to the latest amendments to the act and the rules notified, now there is no possibility of new mineral discovery.

As green field areas cannot be auctioned under the existing regime, these would remain unexplored, maybe for a long time till GSI identifies the same. The role of GSI is very important in this regard and also in providing pre-competitive baseline data of high standard but there are limitations in the role of GSI in terms of carrying out detailed exploration.

In this context, it maybe stated that many large Mineral deposits in India have not been discovered by GSI. A few examples can be cited as that of Rampura- Agucha lead/zinc deposit, Banwas copper deposit and Jhamar Kota rock phosphate deposit etc. in Rajasthan alone. These deposits are chance discoveries by individuals or by other agencies or based on old workings etc. The GSI has undoubtedly done commendable work in identifying potential areas and hundreds of prospects but all these may not qualify for Auction mainly because of insufficient (G-3 or G-4) level data on one hand and no economic viability for investment decision on the other. As the economic viability of a mineral deposit is prima facie the sole criteria to attract the private investment, certain relaxations in the Auction rules in terms of incentives may deserve merit, in order to attract investment in Greenfield or unexplored areas.

Conclusion :  The national planning commission constituted a High Level Committee to study and submit a report about the amendments to be bring in act to encourage the mining industries. It is available in 

Unfortunately, since now the BJP Govt., has come to power, they completely ignore the High Level Committee report by making irrelevant amendments. So direct and indirect new employment in private sector for two million people is not generated.

Mining Industry is in danger – Part-8

The negative impact in mining sector for discouragement of private investment in mineral exploration and development.

Discouragement to Private Investment in Mineral Exploration and Development

 The National Mineral Policy 2008 of Government of India vide item 5.2 states that “while Government Agencies would continue to perform the tasks assigned to them for exploration and survey, the private sector would be the main source of investment in reconnaissance and prospecting and government agencies would spend public fund primarily in areas where private sector investment are not forthcoming”. However on the contrary, 11 Central and State PSUs have been notified as agencies for carrying out exploration under section 4(1) of the MMDR ACT 1957. This may not yield any result, since detailed exploration is not the core activity of these agencies. On the other hand, the National Mineral Exploration Policy 2016 (NMEP) states that Private agencies could be engaged to carryout exploration work in identified blocks/areas with the right to a certain share in the revenue (certain percentage of royalty/premium) when Mineral blocks on the basis of successful exploration are put on e-auction.

It may be mentioned that private investment is a function of risk and return in prospecting and because of uncertainty in this proposal, the private investment is not foreseen and may not materialize.

Mining Industry is in danger – Part-7

The export duty rates in India are again on the heights which are ranging from 10% to 20% for Ore extracted and 10% to 40% for processed ore. The rates are 10% for refined metals. Mica has the highest export duty of 40% with no exemption. The export duty on iron ore and concentrates has the export duty of 30% with an exemption of 20% resulting in the effective rate of 10%.

International Comparison of Taxes on Mining Exports: 2012

 Country Ore extracted Processed ore Refined metal
Argentina 5.00% 5.00% 5.0% – 10.0%
Australia N/A N/A N/A
Brazil 0% 0% 0%
Canada N/A N/A N/A
Ghana N/A N/A N/A
India 10% – 20% 10% – 40% 10%
Philippines N/A N/A N/A
Russia depends depends depends
South Africa N/A N/A N/A
Ukraine N/A N/A N/A
United Kingdom N/A N/A N/A
United States N/A N/A N/A

Source:  (Basic data) PricewaterhouseCoopers, 2012