NLC India Ltd is exploring the possibility of mining critical minerals, including lithium, and will participate in the auction of the blocks once they are on offer, company’s CMD Prasanna Kumar Motupalli said on Friday.
The statement comes at a time when the government is in the process of auctioning critical minerals.
“We are exploring the possibility and viability of the projects and we will certainly desire to enter into that area because that is going to be an area of future. So we are exploring all the possibilities to ensure that mines are taken,” he explained.
The core business of state-owned NLC India is coal and lignite mining and power generation.
“We are exploring all the possibilities and the critical mineral blocks auction is yet to come. So once it will come we will check the viability of the projects where to take, what to take. But we are very serious about moving ahead in that direction,” the chairman and managing director stressed.
Asserting that across the globe the focus is on critical minerals, he said that once the company gets the experience in mining of critical minerals in the domestic market, it will explore the possibility overseas also.
The Union Cabinet recently approved royalty rates of three per cent each for lithium and niobium and one per cent for Rare Earth Elements (REEs).
The approval will enable the Centre to auction lithium, niobium and REE blocks for the first time in the country.
The royalty rate on minerals is an important financial consideration for bidders during auction of mines.
NLC India is a navratna company under the coal ministry.
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First Published: Oct 20 2023 | 1:00 PM IST