Jaitley says Adani coal project not on agenda of Aus visit

March 30:Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today dismissed reports that he would push for funds for Adani’s 16.5 billion dollars coal mine project during his meetings with Australian leaders, saying this was was not on his agenda.

Asked if he would discuss the issue of Adani’s Carmichael coal mine project in Queensland with the Australian leaders he was meeting during his visit, Jaitley said, “not really”.

“This is subject which is internal to Australia and this is not the purpose of my visit,” he said.

His remarks came as media reports earlier had said that Jaitley was likely to push for easy funding for Adani’s controversy-hit project.

The reports said that Adani’s project would figure in talks when the Finance Minister would meet Peter Costello, the head of Australia’s sovereign wealth fund called Future Fund.

“I have been informed that as far as government of Australia is concerned they are doing their very best to stick to the contract subject to whatever other influences in a democracy are there,” Jaitley said, adding that the Adani project was not an issue during his Australia visit.

Adani CEO Jeyakumar Janakraj said the Adani issue was not on the agenda of Jaitley’s visit.

Janakraj was a part of the CII delegation today at the ‘Make in India’ conference launched by the Finance Minister here.

Adani’s plan to build one of the world’s largest coal mines in Australia has been hampered time and again. A federal court in August last year had revoked the original approval due to environmental concerns.

In October last year, the project got a new lease of life after the Australian government gave its re-approval.

Last month, Queensland state’s Department of Environment and Heritage Protection (EHP) issued a final environmental authority (EA) for Adani’s Carmichael Mine project but with about 140 conditions. The project is located near the fragile Great Barrier Reef.

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