Government to develop new mineral policy in consultation with stakeholders

Islamabad: The government wants to develop mineral sector on modern lines as it has great potential to create new jobs and enhance exports.
This was said by Dr. Syed Akhtar Hussain Shah, Member Planning Commission during a consultative session at Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry here on Wednesday . The seminar was organized by Planning Commission in collaboration with ICCI to get the input and proposals of business community for the new mineral policy. Deputy Chief Ministry of Planning Riaz Sahito and General Manager SMEDA KPK Javed Iqbal Khattak were also among the speakers.
Speaking at the occasion, Dr. Syed Akhtar Hussain Shah, Member lanning Commission said that He said the new mineral policy would envisage many interventions including estimation & mapping of mineral reserves with scientific methods, provincial mineral policies/rules, one window facility, fixation of royalties & duties, introduction of Mine Magistrates in mineral rich areas for speedy disposal of disputes,, development of mines access roads, provision of basic facilities like electricity, water, establishment of Common Facilitation Centers, establishment of Export Processing Zones, specific banking products for import of machinery and training facilities.
He said the government wanted to develop new Mineral Policy in consultation with all stakeholders to develop and consultative session at ICCI was a part of that process.He said after thorough study of primary and secondary data and consultations with key stakeholders, a draft framework of mineral policy was developed and business community should provide input to further refine it.
General Manager SMEDA KPK Javed Iqbal Khattak gave a detailed presentation on the draft framework of new mineral policy. He said there were 92 known minerals in Pakistan including chromite, copper, gold, iron ore, lead-zinc, coal, gypsum, gemstones, marble & granite, out of which 52 were commercially being exploited. However, the annual production of minerals was just 2-3 percent of total reserves, which showed huge untapped potential of mineral sector.
Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry Ahmed Hassan Moughal, President, said that government should develop feasibility studies of all minerals and share them with major chambers of commerce to enable the private sector to exploit untapped mineral sources. He said public-private partnership models should be encouraged to extract minerals.

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