Blow to govt plan to restart mining

VINAY DWIVEDI, Benaulim | MAY 23, 2022, 11:04 PM IST

The Centre's move to increase export duty on iron ore below 58 grade from zero to 50% could derail the state government 's plan to restart mining activities in Goa through auctioning as the  iron ore export from Goa would be financially unviable. Most of the  ore produced in the state is low grade and exported to Europe, China and Japan. Duty on high quality ore (above 58 grade) has also been enhanced to 50% from 30% earlier. Mining in Goa ground to a halt in March 2018 after the Supreme Court quashed the second renewal of 88 mining leases citing serious lapses in award of the same. In September,  the Apex Court dismissed an appeal filed by mining companies to permit them to operate leases till 2037.This increase in export duty would possibly be the last nail in the coffin of mining in Goa. Approximately 2,50,000 livelihoods are directly or indirectly dependent on mining, therefore the Chief Minister Pramod Sawant should take up the case with the Union government with as much fervour he shows for amplifying the restoration of imaginary temples destroyed by the Portuguese... that is if he really cares.

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