India's Adani applies to Aus govt fund for coal mine railway financing


* Adani applies for financing from govt fund -minister
    * Wants funding for rail part of $16 bln coal mine
    * Green groups have criticised project
    * But Adani says will provide India with cleaner coal,
create jobs

    By Aaron SheldrickTOKYO, March 13 (Reuters) - India'sAdani Enterprises
<ADEL.NS> has applied for financing from an Australian
infrastructure fund to build a rail line that is part of a $16
billion coal project in the state of Queensland, Australia's
resources minister said on Monday.
    Financing from the A$5 billion Northern Australian
Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) would offer a boost to Adani
after some major banks said they would not participate in the
controversial coal project.
    Since starting work on the Carmichael development over five
years ago, Adani has battled opposition from green groups who
say it will contribute to global warning.
    "(NAIF) is considering Adani's proposal at the moment,"
Matthew Canavan told Reuters in an interview in Tokyo on Monday,
when asked if the Indian company had approached the
infrastructure fund.
    Canavan, visiting the Japanese capital to meet with buyers
of Australian commodities, said Adani had not yet asked for
financing for parts of the project other than the rail line. He
did not disclose how much funding Adani had requested.
    Adani's Australian unit was not immediately available for
    NAIF was set up by the Australian government last year to
promote the economic development of Australia's north by
offering loans for infrastructure projects including airports
ports and railroads.
    Adani, which has secured the major state and federal
government approvals it needs for Carmichael, has still to
announce funding for the project.
    Environmentalists have lobbied banks not to provide loans
and a number, including Germany'sDeutsche Bank [DBKGSG.UL] and
Commonwealth Bank of Australia <CBA.AX>, have stated they will
not participate in the project.
    The Indian company wants to start construction in the middle
of this year, Adani Australia chief executive Jeyakumar
Janakaraj told reporters in December, when he announced an
agreement with the Queensland state government to hire local
workers. [nL4N1E11EL]
    Comprising six open-cut pits, five underground collieries
and the rail line, to the Queensland coast, environmentalists
also fear the mine will produce so much coal for export to India
that it will require a mega-port expansion into the Great
Barrier Reef World Heritage Area.
    Adani has said the project would not threaten the reef,
while creating thousand of jobs and providing India with cleaner
burning coal only found in Australia.

 (Reporting by Aaron Sheldrick; Editing by Joseph Radford)
 ((; 81-3-6441-1320; Reuters


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