Relatively new in India, MDO is a concept where in a coal block owner contracts entire operations to a third party, which takes the responsibility of land acquisition, resettlement and rehabilitation, mining, developing and operating the particular mine by investing in it and then supplying the coal at a tender determined price to the power plants of the mine owning state electricity boards.
Sustainability of mining operations was a key point of discussion at the CII Roundtable. The CIL chairman Rao highlighted the need for post-project monitoring and raising of standards overall. “We need to substantially improve EMP in the interest of the country and in the interest of the sustainability of the project,” he said.
While addressing the roundtable coal secretary S.K. Srivastava said that the auction of explored coal blocks is likely to be undertaken in December 2013 or by January 2014. He said that a ‘letter of comfort’ from the Ministry of Environment & Forests would be given to the successful bidder.
Srivastava told CII that there would also be an exit route after a period of two years if the requisite clearances fail to materialize without any penalty. There have been discussions on lump sum payment or revenue based models and a framework for the same would be intimated shortly, he added.