Indian mining giant Adani on Thursday said it plans to start construction of a 21.7 billion dollar Carmichael coal mine project in Australia in 2017 after years of legal delays over environmental approvals.
"The company is moving ahead, having already invested more than 3.3 billion dollar to date, and still proposes to start the construction stage in the third quarter of 2017," the company's spokesperson said, but added that the uncertainty continued in relation to the Queensland Government's proposed water legislation.
"Adani has already complied with existing legislation," he said. "There is also the outstanding legal challenges to decisions and approvals already granted by both the Commonwealth and State governments," he added.
Adani's efforts to build one of the world's largest coal mine project in Australia's Queensland state has been hampered time and again since its launch six years ago.
A federal court in August last year had revoked the original approval due to environmental concerns. In October last year, the project got a new lease of life after the Australian government gave its re-approval.
Earlier this month, the Queensland Government announced invoking special powers to help progress the Adani's project by giving it special 'prescribed project status'.
Adani's latest comments came as Queensland-based regional leaders strongly demanded the state and federal governments to clear the project without any further delays. In an open letter
published in major newspapers around the state on Thursday, several Mayors and business leaders said, "Its time to get Adani's Galilee projects going — no more red tape, no more delays."