National Mineral Exploration Trust

The National Mineral Exploration Trust (NMET) was established by the Government of India in 2015 with the objective to expedite mineral exploration in the country. The trust is a non-profit body set up by the Central Government for the purposes of regional and detailed exploration of minerals using the funds accrued to it and in such manner as prescribed by the Central Government. In this article, we will discuss the objectives, functions, and activities of the National Mineral Exploration Trust.

Objectives of the National Mineral Exploration Trust

  • The Mines and Minerals (Development & Regulation) Amendment Act, 2015, (MMRDA) mandated the setting up of Mineral Exploration Trust. The Rules in this regard were notified by the Central Government on 14 August 2015. The holder of a mining lease or a prospecting licence-cum-mining lease has to pay to the MET, two per cent of the royalty paid by it.
  • Such contributions are made to the relevant state government along with royalty payments, and the state government, in turn, transfers the amount to MET. State Governments are instructed to report the details of the royalty payments as well as the data on contribution to MET to the Indian Bureau of Mines. NMET contribution is applicable with effect from 12.01.2015. As on 30.04.2016, a total Rs.168.38 crore has been received by NMET from States.
  • An inter-ministerial executive committee chaired by the Secretary of Ministry of Mines manages the day to day affairs of the Trust on the basis of the policies set by the Governing Board chaired by the Union Minister of Mines. The composition of the Executive Committee and Governing Board were notified on 14 August 2015.

Functions of the National Mineral Exploration Trust

  • MET carries out regional (inter-state) and detailed exploration for minerals including those activities deemed necessary by the Governing Body of MET. Some such sanctioned activities include:
  • Funding special studies and projects designed to identify, explore, extract, beneficiate and refine deep-seated or concealed mineral deposits; Priority is given to strategic and critical minerals.
  • Undertaking studies for mineral development, sustainable mining, adoption of advanced scientific and technological practices and mineral extraction metallurgy;
  • Facilitating completion of brown-field regional exploration projects in obvious geological potential areas (G3) including conducting high-risk exploration for deep-seated mineral deposits through modern technologies;
  • Promoting completion of detailed exploration (G2 or Gl) across India in the areas where G3 stage exploration has been completed;
  • Deciding the priorities for exploration after consulting Central Geological Programming Board
  • Facilitating geophysical, ground and aerial survey and geochemical survey of obvious geological potential areas and rest of India;
  • Facilitating a national core repository for encouraging research in earth sciences and for evaluation of the mineral prospects;
  • Organizing capacity building programmes to raise technical capability of personnel engaged in or to be engaged in exploration;

Recent Developments

  • The government on January 11 said it has sanctioned ?154.84 crore to National Mineral Exploration Trust for mineral exploration and boosting capabilities. The financial help to the exploration agencies will provide auctionable mineral blocks to the nation and will aid in realizing self-reliance in the mining sector.
  • �The executive committee meeting of National Mineral Exploration Trust [NMET], Ministry of Mines, was held... Projects of mineral exploration and enhancing institutional capabilities in exploration worth ?154.84 crore were approved,� the Mines Ministry said in a statement.

The National Mineral Exploration Trust (NMET) was established by the Government of India in 2015 with the objective to expedite mineral exploration in the country.

 

Written by IAS POINT

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