Australia-based Legacy Iron Ore Ltd, in which NMDC holds 78.56 per cent, has also applied for allocation of tenements for tungsten in Western Australia, according to company's 2017-18 annual report.
Tungsten metal is of strategic importance due to its essential requirement in defence and aerospace sector and currently, India meets its entire requirement through imports.
NMDC has also signed an MOU with IREL for scouting of rare earth minerals in India and abroad.
As far as steel manufacturing concerned, the new 3-MTPA plant at Chattisgarh is expected to roll the first batch of HR coil by March 2019. Till now, NMDC has spent nearly Rs 138.75 billion on the plant.
The company has also entered pellet-making with a 1.2-MTPA plant at Donimalai. Another 2-MTPA unit is in the process of being set up at Nagarnar, Chhattisgarh.
NMDC is promoting a new Special Purpose Vehicle (SPVs) to set up steel plants in Karnataka and Jharkhand, along with the Ministry of Steel and respective state governments.
After acquiring land and water, and ensuring power allocation and iron ore linkage, the SPVs would rope in a strategic partner to develop and construct the steel plant.
The Jharkhand SPV has selected a site, while in Karnataka, NMDC has acquired 2,800 acres through Karnataka Industrial Area Development Board (KIADB).
“However, because of a change in the MMDR Act with reference to allocation of mineral block through auction system, the concerned state governments where SPVs are planned are reluctant to allocate mineral block directly to SPVs,” said in the annual report.