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Nigeria Is Building World Class Mining Sector – Minister

(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – Nigeria’s Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Olamilekan Adegbite has said that the West African nation is currently building a world class mining sector that would be the toast of investors.

The minister disclosed this while commissioning the Fire Assay Laboratory and Earth Quake Monitoring Centre in Kaduna today. The establishment of this type of laboratory is a crucial step towards making the country a major mining destination

The Fire Assay laboratory is the first of its type in Nigeria and is considered the most reliable means for accurately determining the content of gold, silver, and platinum-group metals in ores or concentrates.

The laboratory is owned by the National Geosciences Research Laboratory Centre Kaduna, which is under the Nigerian Geological Survey Agency, an agency under the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development.

Adegbite expressed his gratitude to President Muhammadu Buhari for his support to the mining sector, noting that his administration had allocated special intervention fund for the sector to enhance its Geo-science data generation capacity.

“Indeed we thank President Muhammadu Buhari for giving this sector the fillip and the push it deserves to becoming a choice mining destination in the mining world. No other administration has allocated the resources that this present administration has to the mining sector and for that we are grateful.

”The commissioning today is a testament to the impressive policy drive of president Buhari. He is the only president that has put extra budgetary funds into the sector to develop it”, he said.

He noted that the laboratory was a crucial analytical infrastructure needed in the mining sector to accurately determine the concentrates of precious metals in ore, noting that the development was bound to take the mining sector to the next level.

“We now have the analytical facilities that can support the mining ecosystem in the country and this is bound to attract more foreign interest in to the sector”, he added.

He further explained that the Fire Assay Laboratory would save the country millions of dollars spent outside the country to conduct such analysis on metal ores, adding the with the establishment of a fire Assay laboratory, we do not need to take metal ores out of the country to determine the level of concentrate of precious metals, thereby expending our scarce foreign exchange in other countries.

“This fire Assay laboratory would free up scarce foreign exchange, while it would also serve as a revenue generator for the government as companies who want to mine precious metals would no longer need to send samples out of the country but now send them to our laboratory in Kaduna which would be a source of revenue generation for the government”, he stressed.

While speaking about the earthquake monitoring equipment, the minister noted that it was important for monitoring and measuring tremors.

Similarly, the Director General of Nigerian Geological Survey Agency (NGSA), Dr. Abdulrazaq Garba observed that the establishment of a Fire Assay laboratory would enhance Nigeria’s status as a mining jurisdiction in the global mining world.

“With the commissioning of this Fire Assay laboratory, we can now conduct analysis of gold and platinum group metals, and as a mineral analysis outfit, this would contribute immensely to the economic growth of the country as we save the nation foreign exchange that would have been spent on conducting the analysis abroad.

“Before now many foreign investors had been making inquiries asking if we have a Fire Assay laboratory that can support the mining sector in the country. With the establishment of one now, it is bound to be a welcome news to foreign investors”, he further stated.

Garba also disclosed that some companies involved in the National Integrated Mineral Exploration Project (NIMEP) programme had spent millions of dollars to obtain such analysis outside the country.

“About two companies did fire essay analysis outside the country just to determine the metal content of what they are doing for example gold, content, the companies in between them spent about two million dollars. If half of that came into the NGSA we would have been able to achieve internally generated revenue for the sector, we would have also been able to save capital flight”, he stressed.

Short URL: https://www.africanexaminer.com/?p=71190

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