India Hits Jackpot!


Sujith Vasudevan, Managing EditorIt’s a great time to be in the mining industry in India. After confirming 5.9 million tonnes of lithium reserves in Jammu and Kashmir, recent surveys by the Geological Survey of India (GSI) have found gold deposits in three districts of Odisha. On top of this, the Union Cabinet has now approved amendments to the Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Act to allow commercial mining of lithium, Titanium, and four more minerals. Lithium and its compounds have several industrial applications, from heatresistant glass and ceramics to steel and aluminum production and lithium-ion batteries. Titanium is mainly used in aircraft, spacecraft, and missiles because of its low density and ability to withstand extremes of temperature.

As of 2022, India is home to around 1,245 reporting mines. While 525 of these are reporting mines for metallic minerals, the rest, about 720, are mining non-metallic minerals. India also has around 914 steel plants producing crude steel. According to IBEF, India’s crude steel production stood at 71.3 MT in FY23 (until October 2022).

The sudden rise in infrastructure development and automotive manufacturing has been a solid tailwind for the mining industry. The increasing demand from the power and cement industries is also playing its part. Given the infrastructure development roadmap of our country, it’s beyond any reasonable doubt that the consumer demand for iron and steel will continue. In November 2022, the government removed export duties on steel and stainless steel to strengthen the nation’s steel sector and allow it to establish its position in the global market firmly. But to leverage these opportunities, the mining organizations need to act smart. They must leverage everything from smart mining concepts and improving safety using drones to digitization and automation. We dedicate this special issue to leaders from the mining industry in India.

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