The Odisha cabinet on Monday approved setting up of the Odisha Mineral Exploration Corporation Ltd (OMECL) to tap virgin mining fields and streamline procedures for mineral exploration.

The objective of the corporation will be to undertake scientific mineral exploration of ore bearing virgin area of the state to at least G2 level (general exploration) for facilitating the auction of mineral blocks, said Chief Secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi.

The corporation which will be a subsidiary of Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC), could also take up sponsored exploration work from various mining leaseholders and other organisations.

The initial paid-up capital is expected to be Rs 5 crore, while the total authorised capital would be Rs 20 crore for the company, said Padhi.

The Cabinet also approved the amendment in the long term ore linkage policy through OMC.

The Odisha government has allowed OMC to sell mineral to end-user industries having their own mining leases to meet the shortfall of the industries. Earlier, OMC was supplying iron ore and chrome to the industries, which had no mines.

Now OMC will supply ores to the end-user industries following recommendations of a committee chaired by the Industry Secretary, on annual supply agreement, said Padhi.

The government has also allowed OMC to export the raw material remaining unsold after meeting the requirement of long term linkage, annual supply agreement and e-auction.

"This will enable OMC to meet the requirement of minerals of state-based end-user industries and dispose of the remaining stocks after meeting the requirement of state-based industries and successful bidders in e-auction," said Padhi.