Thirty Minerals Designated as Critical for India’s Strategic Requirements

Thirty Minerals Designated as Critical for India’s Strategic Requirements


The Ministry of Mines has identified 30 minerals crucial for fulfilling India’s strategic needs.


GS-01 GS-02 (Mineral & Energy Resources, Government Policies & Interventions)

Formation of Committee and Identification of Critical Minerals:

  • On November 1, 2022, the Ministry of Mines established a committee tasked with pinpointing critical and strategic minerals.
  • This committee proposed the establishment of a National Institute or “Centre of Excellence on Critical Minerals” (CECM).
  • The CECM’s responsibility is to update India’s list of critical minerals every three years and formulate the critical mineral strategy.
  • A total of 30 minerals were identified as critical for India, with 24 being included in the list of critical and strategic minerals in Part D of Schedule 1 of the MMDR Act.

Khanij Bidesh India Ltd. (KABIL) and Overseas Engagements:

  • KABIL, a joint venture involving National Aluminium Company Ltd, Hindustan Copper Ltd, and Mineral Exploration and Consultancy Ltd, was established.
  • Its aim is to ensure a steady supply of critical and strategic minerals to India’s domestic market.
  • KABIL initiated engagements with state-owned organizations in selected source countries (e.g., Argentina and Australia) to acquire mineral assets, with a primary focus on critical and strategic minerals.

Amendments to MMDR Act, 1957, and Auction of Mineral Blocks:

  • The Central Government amended the MMDR Act of 1957, incorporating 24 critical and strategic minerals into Part D of Schedule I.
  • This amendment empowers the Central Government to auction critical and strategic mineral blocks. The first tranche of auctions for 20 blocks commenced on November 29, 2023.

Ministry’s Initiatives in Research and Innovation:

  • Under its ‘Science and Technology Programme,’ the Ministry of Mines provides grants for research and innovation in mining, mineral processing, metallurgy, and recycling sectors.
  • The focus is on extracting strategic and critical minerals at an elemental level.

Involvement in Mineral Security Partnerships:

  • The Ministry actively participates in Mineral Security Partnerships (MSP) and other bilateral/multilateral collaborations with various countries to meet India’s critical mineral demands.
  • As part of India’s G20 presidency, the Ministry advocated for the recognition of critical minerals in the G20 New Delhi Leaders’ Declaration, acknowledging their pivotal role in the global energy transition.