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Adani gives final approval for coal mine project in Australia

PTI Melbourne 06 Jun 2017, 9:10:09 IST
PTI

Adani Group Chairman Gautam Adani today gave the final investment approval for the Indian conglomerate's controversy-hit 21.7billion dollars coal mine project in Australia which had hit several roadblocks over environmental concerns. 

"I am proud to announcethe project has Final Investment Decision (FID) approvalwhich marksthe official start of one of the largest singleInfrastructure-- and job creating -- developments in Australia's recent history," Adani said.

This is an historic day for Adani, a historic day for regional Queensland, andahistoric day for the Indian investment in Australia, he said. 

The announcement comes just days after the Adani Group agreed to pay royalties on coal produced from its project after it struck an agreement with the Queensland government to help the controversy-hit project move forward. 

"Thisisthe largest single investment by an Indian corporation in Australia, andI believeotherswill followwithinvestments and trade deals," the Adani Group Chairman said. 

"We have been challengedby activists in the courts, ininner citystreets,and even outside banks thathave noteven been approachedto financetheproject. We are still facingactivists. But we are committed to this project," Adani said, adding that the group is committed to Queenslandand to addressing energy poverty in India. 

Adani said the Carmichael projects will generate 10,000 direct and indirect jobs,with pre-construction works starting in the September Quarter 2017. 

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk today officially opened Adani's Regional Headquarters (RHQ) in Townsville fromwhere the companywill oversee theconstruction and operations of theproject. 

The regional headquarters will also accommodate Adani's Remote Operations Centre, the first time that such a centre has been set up in an Australian regional city. 

PrimeMinister Malcolm Turnbullwas represented at the ceremony bythe Federal Minister for Northern Australia and Resources, Senator Matt Canavan. 

Adani Australia Head of Country and Chief Executive Jeyakumar Janakaraj saidthe companyhasalready invested 3.3 billion dollars in the project, including buying the bulk coal handling port ofAbbot Point. 

Adani today also signed letters of awardfordesign, construction, operations,supply ofmaterialsandprofessional services. 

The Carmichael project has been facing opposition from environmentalists and indigenous groups. The Indian energy giant has for more than five years battled the opposition to any expansion of the Abbot Point port, saying it will cut into the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area.