Minister of Mines and Steel Development Architect Olamilekan Adegbite has identified more minerals as future of the Nigerian mining sector as the country moves to position it’s economy post Covid-19.
He stated this while his keynote address at a vitual meeting on ‘Unlocking Nigeria’s Economic Potentials’ organised by the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG).
The webinar discussed opportunities and impact of Covid-19 pandemic on Nigeria’s mining industry.
The minister stated that, “The double-ended shock of the Covid-19 pandemic and consequent sharp decline in oil prices has led to a revenue shortfall for the country, hence bringing the mining sector to the forefront.
“The administration of President Muhammadu Buhari has been making efforts to diversify the economy away from oil through the development of the mining and agricultural sectors. These efforts are now being fast tracked,” he said.
He added that, “Mining offers robust economic potential to diversify the economy, create jobs and increase government revenue which is our core mandate.
“Nigeria is endowed with over 44 different mineral types occurring in over 500 locations across the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory. Seven of these minerals have been designated strategic to unlock the enormous potential in the sector. They are coal, iron ore, bitumen, gold, limestone, lead-zinc and barite.
“Alongside the seven strategic minerals, the Ministry is also looking into key minerals to fuel the future. These include metals such as titanium, tungsten, lithium and cobalt, which have various applications in futuristic industries such as aerospace, telecoms and electric vehicle manufacturing.
He stresed that the Nigerian Mining Industry Roadmap formulated in 2016 highlights clear policy direction on how to develop the sector, “which we continue to improve upon to unlock the potential in the sector.
“With support from the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari and his ethos on diversification, job creation and sustainable revenue generation, I am confident that Nigeria’s Mining Industry is on track to reach our goal of 5% GDP contribution in the next five years,” he said.