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Thursday, January 6, 2011

Rival Indian firms join hands to bid for Bamiyan iron ore

Posted: Fri Jan 07 2011, 04:10 hrs
New Delhi:

For the first time rivals in the domestic market, steel giants Sail, Tata, Essar, RINL and the Jindal Group, are coming together to jointly bid for iron ore assets and to explore building a steel plant in war-torn Afghanistan.

At a meeting today, the Mines Ministry promised the steel producers “all possible assistance” to facilitate their entry into the “difficult” country.

The Ministry of External Affairs is closely coordinating with the Mines Ministry on the modalities of bidding for mining rights in the Hajigak mines in the Bamiyan province, 130 km west of Kabul.

Afghanistan is estimated to be sitting on iron reserves of 1.8 billion tonnes in Hajigak alone, and is issuing an open tender for multiple exploration concessions. The selected bidder will be granted mineral concessions under the Afghan Mineral Law, 2010.

There are potential coking coal reserves near the Hajigak mines, which the Hamid Karzai government hopes will enthuse companies to set up integrated plants.

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