State Bank of India (SBI) on Tuesday said that it had not committed to extend any loan to the Australian coal mines project of Adani Group but had only signed a conditional Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).
"We would like to state that State Bank of India (SBI) had never committed any loan to the Adani Group. We had only signed an MoU with the group in Australia last year, for assessing the Carmichael coal mines project," SBI said in a statement.
"Signing an MoU is the preliminary step after receiving the loan application, after which the bank starts its due diligence process. It does not mean approval or sanction of the loan, which happens after successful completion of the due diligence process and the company meeting the eligibility criterion," SBI said.
SBI also denied that the MoU was signed in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Earlier, media reports had indicated that SBI had refused to extend US$1 billion to the Adani group for funding the US$15-billion Carmichael coal mine project.
The Adani group acquired the Australian coal mine with the world's largest coal reserves in 2010, but the project has been stuck due to stiff opposition from the environmental groups.