India signs 15 year contract for exploration of gold and platinum in the Indian Ocean

moesGovernment of India has signed a 15-year contract with the International Seabed Authority (ISA) for the exploration of Poly-Metallic Sulphides deposits, which constitutes of gold, platinum, iron, copper, zinc and silver, in the Indian Ocean, said the Ministry of Earth Sciences.

By signing the 15-year contract India’s exclusive rights for exploration of Poly-Metallic Sulphide deposits in the Indian Ocean will be formalized and hence it will further enhance India’s presence in the Indian Ocean where other players like China, Korea and Germany are active, said the ministry.

Poly-Metallic Sulphide is a precipitate of hot fluids from upwelling hot magma from deep interior of the oceanic crust discharged through mineralized chimneyswhich has attracted worldwide attention for their long term commercial as well as strategic values.

The ISA had earlier approved an application submitted by the Ministry of Earth Sciences for allotment of 10,000 sq. km. area along with 15-year plan of work for exploration of Poly-Metallic Sulphides along Central Indian Ridge and Southwest Indian Ridge region of the Indian Ocean, the ministry said.

The Union Cabinet had approved signing of this 15-year contract by the Ministry with the ISA in its meeting held on June 15 earlier thi year.

The program will be implemented by the Ministry of Earth Sciences with the participation from various national institutes and research laboratories and organizations.