The Ministry of Mines has constituted a seven-member committee under the chairmanship of Joint Secretary, Ministry of Mines vide order No. 11/1/2022-IC dated 01.11.2022 to identify the list of minerals critical to our country.
The committee has submitted its report of recommended a total 30 minerals as critical for India. Based on the inputs, Government has released the list of 30 critical minerals for India. These minerals are Antimony, Beryllium, Bismuth, Cobalt, Copper, Gallium, Germanium, Graphite, Hafnium, Indium, Lithium, Molybdenum, Niobium, Nickel, PGE, Phosphorous, Potash, REE, Rhenium, Silicon, Strontium, Tantalum, Tellurium, Tin, Titanium, Tungsten, Vanadium, Zirconium, Selenium and Cadmium.
The Central Government has taken several steps to incentivize private sector participation in mineral exploration. Accredited private exploration agencies which have been notified under the second proviso to Section 4(1) of the MMDR Act have been allowed to carryout exploration without prospecting licence. These agencies have also been made eligible for obtaining funding under National Mineral Exploration Trust (NMET). So far, a total of 14 private agencies have been notified by Central Government under Section 4(1) of MMDR Act. These agencies are in the process of taking up 11 numbers of exploration projects from the NMET fund. Besides, any person can submit a proposal to the State Government for notification of an area for auction of composite licence. Also, incentives such as Partial Reimbursement of Exploration Expenses from NMET for holders of Composite Licenses (CL) for certain deep-seated and critical mineral commodities have been introduced for encouraging private participation in mineral exploration.