NMDC to invest Rs1000 cr on mining in West Bengal

NMDC to invest Rs1000 cr on mining in West Bengal

Kolkata: Indian state-run mining firm NMDC Ltd will invest Rs1000 crore for mining coal in West Bengal, its chairman said on Tuesday.

“We already have two coal blocks in Madhya Pradesh. This will be the third one and investments will go into land acquisitions and heavy duty machinery for mining," Chairman Rana Som said.

NMDC will also form a joint venture with West Bengal Mineral Development and Trading Corp Ltd to explore and develop the coal block in West Bengal, Som said after signing an agreement for the venture.

Both firms would have equal stakes in the venture, which could be diluted up to 15% to include a foreign partner for technical support in mining, he said.

The block has estimated reserves of 2 billion tonnes of thermal coal over an area of 9.7 square kilometres, Som said.

In FY08, NMDC produced 30.6 million tonnes of iron ore and nearly all its output was sold under long term contracts.

The company accounts for about 15% of iron ore production in India and operates three mines, two in central Chhattisgarh state and one in the southern state of Karnataka.

Shares in the company ended 6.51% down at 149.30 rupees in the Mumbai market.