Published on: December 30, 2021




The State Government of Goa approved a policy permitting mining companies to export low-grade iron ore, paving the way for resumption of mining activity that has been stalled since 2018.



  • Iron ores are rocks and minerals from which metallic iron can be extracted.
  • India has large iron ore reserves. It occurs in various geological formations but major economic deposits are found in volcano-sedimentary Banded Iron Formation (BIF) from the Precambrian age.
  • Magnetite is the finest iron ore with a very high content of iron up to 72 percent. It has excellent magnetic qualities, especially valuable in the electrical industry.
  • Hematite ore is the most important industrial iron ore in terms of the quantity used but has a slightly lower iron content than magnetite.
  • The highest producer is the Odisha Jharkhand belt, Durg Bastar Chandrapur belt, Bellary-Chitradurga-Chikmagalur-Tumkur belt, and the Maharashtra Goa belt.

The iron ore is found in following four type:

  • Magnetite: It is the most important and best kind of iron ore. It contains about 72 percent metallic iron in it. It is found in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Goa and Kerala.
  • Hematite: It is also an important source of Iron. It contains about 60-70 percent metallic iron in it. It is red and brown in colour. It is found in Odisha, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh. In the western section, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Goa have this kind of ore.
  • Limonite: It contains about 30 to 40 percent metallic iron in it. It is mostly yellow in colour. It is low-grade iron ore.
  • Siderite: It has more impurities. It contains about 48 percent metallic iron content in it. It is brown in colour. It contains a mixture of iron and carbon. It is low-grade iron ore. It is self-fluxing due to the presence of lime.

Iron Ore in Goa

  • Production of iron ore in Goa started quite late and it is a recent development.
  • Goa now produces over 18 percent of the total production of India. There are nearly 315 mines in North Goa, Central Goa, and South Goa.
  • The richest ore deposits are located in North Goa. These areas have the advantage of river transport (through river Mandovi and Zuari connect through Cumberjua canal) or ropeways for local transport and that of Marmagao port for exporting the ore.
  • Most of Goa’s iron ore is exported to Japan.