Indian, Canadian officials discuss critical mineral mining cooperation

NEW DELHI (Reuters) – A top Indian minister held talks on boosting critical mineral mining cooperation with Canadian officials on Monday, the Indian government said, amid tense diplomatic relations between the two countries.

India’s Coal and Mines Minister Pralhad Joshi “resolved to strengthen the supply-chain of critical minerals” in talks with Ranj Pillai, the premier of Canada’s Yukon Territory, the government said in a statement.

The statement did not specify the critical minerals under discussion, but mentioned that Yukon’s leading mineral resources include lead, zinc, silver, gold, asbestos, iron and copper.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi raised strong concerns about Sikh protests in Canada with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on the sidelines of a G20 summit in New Delhi earlier this month.

For its part, Canada paused talks on a proposed trade treaty with India. Canadian Trade Minister Mary Ng also is postponing a planned trade mission to India.

(Reporting by Shivam Patel and Neha Arora in New Delhi; Editing by Paul Simao)