Nigeria’s Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dr. Oladele Alake has revealed plans for forthcoming reforms in the mining industry aimed at distinguishing genuine long-term, value-added investors from those merely exploiting raw minerals for quick gains.
Addressing the Mining Ministers Forum at the China Mining Week 2023 in Tianjin, China, Alake highlighted how the Federal Government’s new mineral development roadmap will tackle persistent issues within the sector.
He explained that the proposed Nigerian Solid Minerals Development Company will harness both domestic and international capital and technology to elevate the sector’s industrial capacity.
Underlining the critical importance of geological data for mining finance and exploration, Alake emphasised the Tinubu administration’s commitment to substantial investments in this area. The aim is to make it more attractive for investors to enter the sector while simultaneously establishing social and governance standards to safeguard the environment.
The minister also shared that the government is actively engaging with artisanal miners, encouraging them to join cooperatives to formalise labour and small enterprises within the sector. This will help provide broader access to training, extension services, machinery and credit.
Furthermore, Alake assured investors of a structured industrial environment. He revealed that a new security framework for the sector is in development, combining formal enforcement agencies with community safety organizations to combat threats and safeguard miners.
Addressing concerns about potential interference from sub-national agencies in mining operations, Dr. Alake noted that the Tinubu administration has successfully fostered harmonious relations between federal and state governments. He stated that the ministry recently hosted a governors’ forum to address critical issues.
In conclusion, the minister advised prospective investors to incorporate mineral industrial processing into their business plans, as a new requirement for mandatory value addition as part of the investment conditions will soon be introduced.