Some of India's unique features that are not discussed elsewhere in this pages follow:
Current Exploration. Some hundreds of thousands of square kilometers of Prospecting Licences and Reconnaissance Permits for non-ferrous metals and diamonds have been cleared by the Indian Ministry of Mines since the liberalization of the 1990s.
India's "New Mining PolicY" was introduced in early 2008 after more than 4 years in preparation. It offers several new advantages to explorers and developers and is expect to become law in late 2009 after the next election.
Geologic Endowment. The Precambrian shield of the subcontinent is similar to the other very prolific mineral producing shields of the world -- the Brazilian shield, the Canadian shield, Africa, Australia, etc. Explorers are now following up evidence of many types of ore deposits.
"Prospectivity" -- Or amenability to modern prospecting methods. We exploration geologists have always competed with the thousands of people who have gone before, building on their success and revisiting places and prospects they did not or could not explore and mine. We have several advantages -- better geologic knowledge, modern geophysics and geochemistry; advanced drilling methods; and the ability to profitably bulk-mine and process lower grades of ore than our forebears could.
Sheer Size. The country is huge, about half the size of the 48 contiguous United States. The expanse of prospectable Archean and Proterozoic rocks is very large.
Large Existing Menu of Prospects. The geologic institutions in India have identified and studied numerous prospects for the precious and base metals and diamonds. Owing to a lack of capital dedicated to risk exploration and to the previous restrictions on scheduled minerals, many of these have not been fully explored.
Data, Maps, Air Photos, Reports. India has topographic maps, geologic maps, geophysical maps, air photos, satellite images and enormous libraries of general and specific geological and geophysical data generated down through the years. Many countries do not have such a rich information base.
Commercial Infrastructure. India is a major industrial economy with deeply rooted financial institutions such as banks and stock exchanges. Highways, railroads, air services and telecommunications are better than many countries where geologists are currently exploring.
Government, Laws and Courts. India is the largest democracy in the world. It has a vast body of law. The law is written and widely distributed. It is written in English. The court system is experienced in applying the law. These fundamentals do not exist in many other countries.
India's Strongest Point … India has invited foreign companies to come develop mines there; the central government and most state governments are doing their best to meet industry's needs, to communicate well and to foster investment.
Further Information. In addition to the Indian Department of Mines for technical data, please try the following for more information for general and business news: www.rediff.com and www.financialexpress.com.
(January 1, 2009)