By Victoria Onehi
President Bola Tinubu has said the era of export of crude minerals from Nigeria is gone-.Just as he said the Federal Government has initiated the policy of value addition to Nigerias Mineral resources before exportation to curb the huge revenue losses when exported raw.
Tinubu disclosed this on Tuesday in his speech at the 8th Nigerian Mining week taking place in Abuja with the theme ‘Capitalizing On Nigeria’s Critical Mineral Resources For Its Growth,”
The President who was represented by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation Sen.George Akume said the policy is geared towards earning more revenue for the country as well as foreign exchange.
” The present administration has recognised the huge losses recorded by the nation through export of crude mineral commodities , therefore has initiated the policy of value addition to it’s mineral resources before exportation.
“The policy will ensure that the teaming youths in the country will also be meaningfully absolved in the coming ventures that will empower them while developing their skills in specialised areas of human endeavours as well as serving as a source of generating foreign exchange for the country.
Through this policy the era of export of crude minerals from Nigeria is gone.
The President said it is gratifying to note that some companies in Nigeria have adjusted their business plan to this new normal and others are encouraged to do so. He added that governnmnt will continue to create and maintain a normal business environment for genuine investors in Nigeria.
In his address, the Minister of Solid Minerals, Dr Dele Alake said the mining industry is undergoing a technological revolution, and Nigeria is not left behind in embracing these innovations.
“We recognise the importance of incorporating cutting-edge technology into our mining operations to enhance efficiency, safety, and environmental sustainability. From drone-based surveying to remote-sensing technology, we are actively exploring avenues to modernize our mining practices.
“Furthermore, we are collaborating with research institutions and industry experts to develop innovative solutions for mineral exploration and extraction. By harnessing the power of data and technology, we can make informed decisions that benefit both investors and our nation’s development.
Alake also noted that Infrastructure plays a pivotal role in the success of the mining industry. “We are aware of the acute infrastructure deficits that have hindered the growth of the sector in the past. Therefore, we are embarking on ambitious infrastructure development projects to facilitate mineral transportation, processing, and export.
“Our plans include the construction of dedicated mineral corridors, the expansion of rail and road networks, and the development of modern processing facilities. These infrastructure investments will not only reduce logistical challenges for mining companies but also create a conducive environment for new investment. ” Alake said.
The Minister of Solid Minerals, Prince Shaiubu Audu noted that Nigeria is endowed with an array of critical minerals such as coal, tin, lead, limestone, and iron ore, among many others.
“These resources, if properly harnessed, hold the key to not only diversifying our economy but also significantly increasing our revenue streams. They are the bedrock upon which we can build a more prosperous, self-sufficient, and industrially advanced Nigeria.
“Allow me to emphasize the pivotal role of the steel sector in this journey towards revitalizing our economy. Steel, as we know, is the backbone of industrialization. It is a core ingredient for infrastructure development, manufacturing, and construction.” Audu said.
The National President of the Miners Association of Nigeria,Dele Ayanleke said the Mining Week has given opportunity for conversations and proactive recommendations to address all challenges militating against the growth of the sector; be it resource control and state interventions, insecurity, inadequate human and logistic capacities of the regulatory bodies, illegality and banditry in all ramifications, uncontrolled involvement of foreign nationals, inadequate value addition and raw exportation of our mineral resources and such like.
“We have also registered the intention of Mr President to relaunch the nation back on the track to be among the comity of industrialised nations of the world as indicated by the separation of the iron and steel component and creating a different ministry to accelerate the processes to revolutionize the steel sector.” Ayanleke said.