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Saturday, December 10, 2011

Mines minister denies plans to ban iron ore export

Saturday, 10 Dec 2011

Mr Dinsha Patel minister of state for mines in a written reply to a question in Lok Sabha said that “Recently State Government of Karnataka and State Government of Orissa had, inter-alia, suggested ban on export of iron ore with a view to conserve minerals and allow value addition in the country. Demand for ban on iron ore is not new and it has arisen in the past out of concerns on depletion of ore due to exports, need to conserve the ore for future domestic requirement, leveraging domestic value addition capacity and inflationary impact of exports on domestic pricing.

These concerns had been duly considered by the Government and it was felt that these fears of depletion were misplaced and that though the Steel Industry needed protection, ban or cap on exports would not be the correct instrument, and the appropriate mechanism to control exports would lie in the fiscal measures.

It was also held that this position should be revisited after 10 years. The Government is also of the opinion that while exports of iron ore has increased in the last few years, these exports largely consist of Iron ore Fines(approximately 80%) which do not have sufficient domestic market, which if allowed to accumulate in the mines could pose serious environmental hazard apart from restricting production of Iron ore.”

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