Samuel Bello, Abuja
The Nigerian Institution of Metallurgical Mining and Materials Engineers (NIMMME) has said with available reserves of Iron Ore and lead, asides other resources, the nation can generate $292 billion.
National Chairman of NIMMME, Dr. Ayo Adeyemo, who stated this recently at an investiture ceremony and public lecture in Abuja, said Mineral host communities must be tamed to avoid unburdening potential investors with unnecessary financial responsibilities and disruption of mining activities.
Adeyemo urged the federal government to come up with mines extension officers for the continuous education of mines operators, most especially artisanal miners. He added that the spate of insecurity should also be addressed holistically.
“The effect of insecurity on mining and the mineral industry in general is summed up in the data available from NEITI, which shows that in 2016, aside from recession, insecurity greatly affected the export earnings from solid minerals. The estimated deposit of iron ore is 3 billion tonnes, coal is 3 billion, while lead and zinc is 10 million tonnes according to the 2018 report of geology and mineral resources of Nigeria and their uses.
“The data available from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), shows that the GDP of coal, metal ore and other mined and quarried products stands at N102 billion ($330 million) in 2016 during the recession it rose to N126 billion($407 million) in 2017. Despite the growth of about 240 percent observed in the GDP contribution of these minerals between 2011, when it was N52.5 billion ($170 million) and 2017, the contribution of mining to the overall national GDP, reduced from 0.14 percent to 0.11 percent.
“This is far too low compared to the earning potentials of minerals available in Nigeria. For instance, the available reserves of Iron ore and lead, the nation can generate $280 billion and $12 billion respectively. This is aside the other minerals like coal, gold, tantalite and cassiterite,” he said.