Mineral auction regime in India: challenges and future outlook
Pradeep Kumar Jain ()
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Pradeep Kumar Jain: Indian Bureau of Mines
Mineral Economics, 2022, vol. 35, issue 1, No 3, 17-33
Abstract Mineral and Mining sector, being one of the core sectors of economy, provides basic raw materials to many important industries like power generation (thermal), iron and steel, cement, petroleum and natural gas, petro-chemicals, fertilisers, precious and semi-precious metals/stones, electrical and electronics equipment, and glass and ceramics. The demand for minerals has always/been on the rise with the unfolding of rapid scale of urbanisation and ambitious growth target set for the Manufacturing Sector in India. India is one of the leading producers of many vital and strategic minerals. India has discernible constitutional and legal framework in place to manage the diversification of its Mineral Sector. National Mineral Policy provides operational framework for the Mineral Sector. The Mines and Minerals (Development & Regulation) Act (MMDR), 1957, with amendments as recent as that effected in 2016 is the principle legislation that governs the Mineral and Mining Sector in India. However, judicial pronouncements for allocation of natural resources and subsequent recommendations of high-level committees steered the government towards a paradigm shift caused the adoption of transparent measures in the allocation of mineral blocks through an auction system. The MMDR Amendment Act, 2015, which came into force on 12 January 2015 has ushered in the regime of transparent and nondiscretionary grant of mineral concessions, and thereafter all the concessions of major minerals are granted through auction. Further, the e-auction process for the grant of mineral blocks has laid the foundation stone for “ease of doing business” in the Mining Sector of the country. In the Mining Sector, the dynamics and demand and supply and their effect on the market would in the near future after several trends for instance the recent trend of mineral block auctions threw some challenges, such as to define a threshold for high premium in auction scenario and driving force for high premium in the recent mine auction and its impact on finished product. Every paradigm shift induces setting of new normal. The future demand outlook for minerals and metals is definitely promising and harnessing mineral wealth to advance economic development, and human well-being would get to the top of priorities.
Keywords: Diversification; Exploration; Manufacturing sector; Mineral auction; Mining sector; Natural resources; Sustainable development (search for similar items in EconPapers)
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