Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, June 6:
The Odisha government today set a target to double ore production capacity of the Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC) to 20 million tonnes by 2019. The government has set a production target of 10 million tonnes of ore for the state-owned mining company for the current year.
Chairing an annual review meeting of the Steel & Mines department, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik asked the department to prepare a road map for the purpose.
OMC will be required to meet the target by extraction of iron and chrome ores.
“The government has decided to double ore production of OMC in the next three years. Presently, OMC’s mineral production is 10 million tonnes, which includes both iron ore and chrome ore,” said Steel and Mines Minister Prafulla Kumar Mallick briefing newsmen after the meeting.
“The government has also set a target of earning revenue of Rs 6,600 crore as royalty from mineral production, including 75 million tonnes of iron ore during the period,” Mallick said.
In view of the shortage of construction material in the state, the Chief Minister directed the department to relax certain rules with regard to minor minerals through amendment.
While directing officials to strengthen the enforcement wing of the Steel and Mines department, the Chief Minister asked them to constitute District Mineral Fund within a month to take up development work in mining areas.
The Chief Minister asked OMC authorities to fulfill the raw material demand of the local industries, who often complain about scarcity of ore.
The meeting discussed creation of a new directorate for steel, successful resolution of environmental issues, formulation of new policy for gem stones to create ample employment opportunities among others.