(EnergyAsia, December 6 2012, Thursday) — Adani Group, an India-based global infrastructure company, said it has mapped out Australia’s largest mining exploration programme in Queensland state’s Carmichael mine which it claims holds up to 10 billion tonnes of coal reserves.

As part of the programme, the company said it has deployed a record number of drill rigs to speed up exploration of the mine in the Galilee Basin. The programme form a part of its proposed A$10 billion investment to develop a world class mine, rail and port infrastructure.

Company chairman Gautam Adani said:

“Our partnership with Australia and Queensland has been one of exceptional trust, transparency and understanding. Australian and Indian corporates like the Adani Group have distinctive synergies, which will prove to be of mutual benefit to all in the long run. The Adani Group stands committed to setting up world class infrastructure facilities such as a mine, railway and port in Australia.”

Senior Australia officials including energy minister Martin Ferguson and Queensland Premier Campbell Newman are leading delegations of high-level political and business officials to India this week to promote bilateral trade and investment ties.

“As India’s industries continue to grow, so do the opportunities for partnerships between our regions. India has become more to Queensland than a mere trading partner. We are now trading allies,” said Mr Newman.

Apart from creating thousands of skilled jobs in Australia, Adani said it is also developing logistics infrastructure for its mine. It has completed the basic engineering for its proposed 400 km railway line connecting Carmichael to the Abbot Point port’s coal terminal.

“We have recently submitted a statement to state and federal authorities about the potential environmental, social and economic impacts of its proposed mine and rail projects, including its commitment to protect the environment,” said Mr Adani.

To date, the Adani Group has invested A$3 billion in cash in its Queensland projects, with plans to pump in another A$7 billion over the next few years. (US$1=A$0.96).