Nigeria’s mining sector to receive $600m investment fund — Osinbajo
Nigeria’s Acting President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, on Tuesday disclosed that the country’s mining sector will receive $600 million investment fund through the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority, the Nigerian Stock Exchange and others.
Osinbajo disclosed this while declaring open the ongoing three-day National Mining Summit, with the theme, ‘Unearthing Nigeria’s Mining Sector’, in Abuja.
“We are currently working with the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority, the Nigerian Stock Exchange, and others to assemble a $600m investment fund for the sector. Internationally we have secured $150m in funding from the World Bank for the Mineral Sector Support for Economic Diversification (MSSED).”
He expressed optimism that with the recently launched Economic Recovery and Growth Plan, the country will achieve its target of seven per cent economic growth rate by 2020, with more aggressive growth rate of 8.54 percent for the mining sector.
The Acting President said the mining sector will contribute $27 billion to the country’s GDP in 2025. He said: “I am pleased to be here today joining you at this national mining summit. Importantly it underscores the earth moving task before us and the enormous opportunities. Yes we need to unearth this incredible source of growth and development for us before our continent.
“For us in Nigeria, this summit is also a key step towards implementing our economic recovery and growth plan launched in April by President Buhari. The mining sector is a priority for the Nigerian government and a crucial part of our economic growth and diversification agenda.
“We have also secured funding from both domestic and international sources for investment in the solid mineral industry.
From the public purse, the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development has been granted access to the mining sector component of our natural resources development fund for a sum of N30bn , approximately a $100m, an intervention fund from the federal government. ‘’This is partly to help provide cheap loans and grants to industry participants as well as for direct investing in foundational infrastructure.”
Apart from financial investments, he said government was also addressing the challenge of the lack of geological data.
“The Nigerian geological and survey agency is undertaking the additional ground investigation nationwide to upgrade our national minerals’ database so that we can more easily attract financial investment, as well as assure operators of the scope of operations required for further exploration and mining.
“We’ve also signed memoranda of understanding and technical cooperation agreements with the China Geological service, Shandong Mineral Exploitation Agency; and the National Office of Hydrocarbons and Mines of Morocco,” he said.