India’s ministry of mines to address shortcomings in fixation of average sale price of minerals

India’s mines ministry is looking to address the “issues and shortcomings” that come in the way of fixation of average sale price (ASP) of minerals. The government has also sought suggestions from various stakeholders to overcome the issue till the National Mineral Index (NMI) is formulated for individual minerals.

Miners’ body Federation of Indian Mineral Industries (FIMI) had earlier urged the Centre to continue with the present system of average sale price published by Indian Bureau of Mines (IBM) which it said is the most effective and transparent way to ensure price discovery and revenue to the exchequer.

The mines ministry had in April constituted a committee for examining the double calculation of royalty due to its inclusion in calculation of ASP of minerals and developing an NMI for valuation of mineral resources as well as for determination of value for auction of mineral concessions and statutory payments for future auctions.

The committee has decided to “seek comments/suggestions from the governments of states and union territories, mining industry, stakeholders, industry associations and other entities concerned, on…the issues and shortcomings in fixation of ASP currently being done and suggest measures to overcome these till NMI is formulated for individual minerals,” the mines ministry said in a notice.

The panel has also sought suggestions on the incidence of double calculation of royalty, if any, due to its inclusion in calculating ASP and has also asked for measures to address the same, it said. The panel under the chairmanship of former coal secretary S K Srivastava has members from different organisations of the central government.

FIMI had earlier said that the basic premise of NMI is that the present statutory payments, including auction premium, royalty, District Mineral Foundation (DMF) and National Mineral Exploration Trust (NMET) are based on ASP published by Indian Bureau of Mines (IBM).

National Mineral Index is being developed on the lines of the National Coal Index (NCI), which is based on Coal India (CIL) notified prices and auction prices and import prices.

“While majority of the coal consumed in the country is for power, which is a regulated sector, all non-coal minerals are consumed for non-regulated sectors such as steel, aluminium, cement, etc.,” FIMI had said.

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