First gold mine auction on Feb 26, iron ore block on Mar 2
In a first, Chhattisgarh will conduct the auction of a gold mine next week while Odisha will put an iron ore block under the hammer in March. Out of the 46 mineral blocks put up for auction so far, states have been able to conduct successful auction of only four limestone blocks from which the government expects to garner around Rs 6,700 crore. “We expect to conduct successful auction of both the blocks — gold and iron ore — because of the commercial value attached to the mineral. It will be a first for both metals in the ongoing auctions. Gold mine is on February 26 and iron ore is on March 2, 2016,” a senior government official said.
A total of 14 iron ore blocks — a key steel-making ingredient — have been offered by the states, which include 12 by Karnataka and one each by Maharashtra and Odisha. In the case of gold, two blocks have been put up for auction — one each by Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand. The government expects the auction of gold and iron ore mines to help enhance the interest of the industry, which has not shown much enthusiasm in the ongoing mines auction so far. The mines auction in Maharashtra, Gujarat and Rajasthan failed to find many interested parties, forcing the state governments to talk to industry and working on re-auctioning the blocks.