Australian delegation calls on Sis Ram, discusses cooperation

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New Delhi, Jan 18 (UNI) A five-member visiting delegation led by Mr Simon Crean, Minister for Trade, Australia, today called on Union Mines Minister Sis Ram Ola and discussed ways to enhance bilateral co-operation in the mining sector.

Mr Ola told the delegation that mining industries of both countries were working together to promote mineral trade and investment between India and Australia.

Five meetings have so far been held of the Joint Working Group (JWG) on Energy and Minerals, set up in 2000 to enhance bilateral co-operation in the energy and mineral sectors. The Mines Ministry is the nodal Ministry for the JWG.

The Ministries of Coal, Petroleum and Natural Gas, Power, Non-Conventional Energy Sources, Commerce and MEA are also represented in the Indian side. The last meeting of the JWG was held in Canberra on July 2-3, 2007.

Australia's mining industry has always been rated as among the best in the world, in terms of mineral production, technology used and use of environmental protection measures in the mining sector. India looks forward to Australia both in terms of Foreign Direct Investment in iron ore, bauxite, chromites, barites, china clay, potash and granite and the superior mining technology.

India is interested in Australia's administration of their mining regime, procedures and mining practices; mechanised large-scale mining operations and handling arrangements; state-of-the-art technology adopted for open cast mining; expertise in the areas of exploration, mining and environment protection and environmental management and practices adopted in Australia's mining sector.

UNI SD MSJ KP2006

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