Adani’s Australia coal mines project back on track after royalty payments deal
Ahmedabad: Adani Enterprises Ltd on Tuesday said that it has reached an agreement with Australia’s Queensland government on royalty payments for its controversial $16.5 billion Carmichael coal mine project.
The royalty arrangement means the project is back on track, the company said in a filing with BSE.
Adani Enterprises will take a final investment decision on the project at its next board meeting, the firm said, without giving a date for the same. Last week, the board had deferred a final decision pending the royalty agreement.
Calling this a benchmark decision to take the project forward, Adani said in its statement that the agreement, which meets its expectations and requirements, shows a strong commitment by the Queensland state government to the project.
The firm thanked Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and opposition leader Bill Shorten for their support for the changes to the Native Title Bill.
The amendment bill, which is expected to be passed in the Australian parliament next month, makes it easier for companies like Adani to sign land rights agreements with indigenous land owners.
The company plans to build one of the world’s largest coal mines in Queensland, where it has already invested over $3.3 billion. The Carmichael coal mine project, announced in 2010, ran into resistance from environmentalists, resulting in delays of at least three years.
Last year, the Queensland department of environment and heritage protection issued the final clearance for the project in the Galilee Basin.On 19 August, Adani won a major legal battle when the Australian apex court dismissed appeals lodged by indigenous community member Adrian Burragubba as well as a Brisbane-based environmental group against the project.
Last month, Prime Minister Turnbull met Adani Enterprises founder-chairman Gautam Adani during his three-day visit to India. During the meeting, he reportedly reaffirmed his government’s commitment to the company’s coal mine project. Earlier this year, Queensland premier Annastacia Palaszczuk also met Adani at Mundra in Gujarat, where his conglomerate runs a port.
The Adani group expects to complete the first phase of the project by 2020-21.