Indian School of Mines' overseas venture

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  • Published 23.07.07

Dhanbad, July 23: A far-reaching agreement with Australian mining company, ‘BHP Billiton’, will allow students from Indian School of Mines University ( ISMU) to work as interns and trainees with the multinational company.

Dean of Academic Research, R. Venugopal, claimed this to be the first “overseas” MoU signed by the school in its 80-year-long history. The Australian company, he pointed out, is globally the second largest supplier of metallurgical coal and the third largest producer of copper.

The five-year agreement would also enable the school to initiate consultancy for the Australian major. Besides academic exchanges, the school will jointly hold conferences, workshops and seminars, exchange scientists and academic course material.

The MoU, he pointed out, has opened doors to the students and academic staff of the mining school in terms of jobs, short-term research, contractual projects, design and development of equipment and products.

The agreement with the Western Australian company was signed recently between ISMU and the Indian representatives of BHP Billiton. “Earlier we had signed agreements with India based companies and organisations but not with an MNC,” he said.

“BHP Billiton contacted us and told us about their Asian operations and sought our technical expertise. We put forth our conditions too in different meetings. Subsequently they agreed to recruit our students and make us a part of their future projects and finalised the agreement,” said Venugopal.

The Australian company has asked ISMU to identify potential places in Bihar-Jharkhand-Orissa and Bengal for iron ore and coal mining.

ISMU and BHP Billiton have also agreed to jointly own any intellectual property right , arising from any joint project, and sharing the commercial returns from licensing operations, given with each other’s consent.

T. Kumar, director of ISMU, hailed the agreement as “path-breaking”.