To prove that the efforts of the present government as regards economic diversification is yielding the desired result, the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Dr Kayode Fayemi recently made the intimation that over N2 billion was generated from operations in the mining sector between January to July, 2017.
Making this known while delivering his keynote address at the maiden edition of the National Council on Mining and Mineral Resources Development (NCMMRD) in Abuja, the minister disclosed that the amount earned so far surpassed the entire revenue of N2bn generated for the whole of 2016.
According to him, the mission of his ministry was to build a world class minerals and mining ecosystem that would ratchet up domestic and export market for minerals and ores and yield a tremendous income to the government as part of their diversification policy.
In his word: “We seek to rebuild market confidence in our minerals and mining sector and win over domestic users of industrial minerals in order to achieve import substitution.”
He gave the assurance that the government would play its own role by making provision for a wider spectrum of vibrant participants across the entire value chain and a solid archive; database of geo-sciences research and data that actively encourages investor participation; a thriving enabling environment that provides the key support infrastructure and services that enables the industry to flourish.
According to the minister, “We are working to attract a diverse portfolio of participants, from artisanal miners, to junior explorers, to mining majors, into the industry. Our goal is to build a sector that is competitive and supportive of our overall job creation and wealth generation aspirations for Nigerians.
“It is however encouraging noting that our efforts have begun yielding desired results. For example, one highlight of the Roadmap is to achieve, through stakeholders’ engagement, an increasing amount of Mining contribution to GDP, and the delivery of shared prosperity to all stakeholders in all aspects of the Mining Value Chain (Exploration, Mining, Beneficiation and Trade).
“Already, we achieved a 300% increase in revenue (royalties and fees) between 2015 and 2016, and as at July of this year, the sector had already surpassed the entire revenue of N2 billion generated for the whole of 2016, Fayemi stated.
He gave the assurance that the government is working assiduously to improve the engagement of states with the minerals and mining sector, particularly around financial participation and revenue sharing, adding that The NCMMRD is a major step in this direction.
“The NCMMRD supports the aspirations and objectives of the roadmap, and is designed to be a well-structured platform where stakeholders in the sector can converge periodically to develop policy advisory, validation, and other interventions, to effectively guide Government in achieving the full implementation of the Roadmap and the achievement of the targets contained therein”, the minister added.