PESHAWAR - Despite unfavourable conditions due to the prevailing Corona situation, the Khyber Pa­khtunkhwa Mines and Mineral Develop­ment Department has generated revenue of Rs.3.25 billion during the financial year 2019-20 as compared to previous financial year’s revenue of Rs.2.10 billion making 51 percent increase in the revenue collected in the head royalty.

This was revealed in a meeting of Miner­al Investment Facilitation Authority (MIFA) held here on Tuesday with Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Mahmood Khan in the chair. The meeting was given a detailed briefing on the overall performance of the department, steps taken to curb illegal min­ing activities in the province, current status of royalty rates of different minerals, future course of action for exploration and effi­cient management of mineral resources, is­sues faced by the department and various other related matters.

The meeting was informed that the de­partment had set Rs. 6.00 billion target of revenue collection during current financial year and under a well planned strategy re­sults-oriented steps were being taken. The meeting was attended besides others by Special Assistant to CM on Mines and Min­eral Development Arif Ahmadzai, Special Assistant to CM on Information and Local Government Kamran Bangash, Head of Stra­tegic Support Unit Sahibzada Saeed, Secre­tary Mines and Mineral Development Naz­ar Hussain Shah and Principal Secretary to CM Shahab Ali Shah and other relevant au­thorities.

Expressing satisfaction over the per­formance of the department, Chief Minis­ter Mahmood Khan directed the high ups of the department to take concrete steps to explore the untapped mineral resourc­es of the province, efficient management of mines, promote mechanized mining, dis­courage manual mining and to make mining environment friendly. He also directed the high ups to focus special attention on scien­tific and mechanized exploration of mineral resources in the newly merged districts so that it could be utilized for the development of the areas.

He stressed the need for an effective and permanent mechanism of monitoring with­in the department to curb sporadic activi­ties of illegal mining across the province and directed the high ups to come up with workable proposals to this effect.