Odisha Government Scraps Bidding Process For 20 Mines
Dumper trucks operate in the iron ore excavation pit. (Photographer: Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg)  

Odisha Government Scraps Bidding Process For 20 Mines

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The Odisha government has decided to annul a previous bidding process and go for fresh auctioning of 20 iron ore and manganese mines, leases of which are scheduled to expire by the end of March 2020, officials said.

The Department of Steel and Mines directed the Director of Mines in a letter on Monday that it would initiate a fresh process for the auction of the 20 mineral blocks.

The government had floated tenders in October for auction sale of the mines as per the Mines & Minerals Development Amendment Act 2015.

"We will go for fresh auction process under a single Notice Inviting Tender, which will be initiated immediately in respect of 20 leases expiring on March 31, 2020. Those were covered under the annulled Notice Inviting Tenders dated Oct. 4 ad Oct. 14 respectively," the official said.

The auction process for mineral blocks notified under another annulled NIT dated Oct. 18 will be scheduled subsequently, the official said.

The state government will invite fresh tenders for the 20 mines on Dec. 6 and the last date for sale of tender document is Dec. 30, the official said.

The decision was taken on the basis of discussions held in the recent meetings of the Technical Evaluation Committee and the High Level Committee.

It was also decided to return the bank guarantees furnished by the bidders in response to the annulled NITs.

The reservation of mineral blocks for end-use, including the definition of end-use and Reserve Prices as approved earlier, shall be retained as such in this fresh auction, he said.

The new time schedule for auction of the 20 blocks as finalised in consultation with the Transaction Advisor, has been intimated to the Director of Mines.

The letter of intent will be provided to the successful bidder between Feb. 10 and 29, the official said.

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