2023 Mining Week: “We Will Engineer Diversification Of The Economy Through Solid Minerals” – Minister


The Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dr. Dele Alake has restated the commitment of the Tinubu Administration to engender economic growth and diversification of the economy through the development of vast solid mineral deposits in the country.

Giving the keynote address as the host of the 2023 mining week tagged ” *Capitalising on Nigeria’s critical mineral resources for its economic growth* ,’ Dr. Alake assured stakeholders of the resolve of the ministry to diversify the nation’s economic base and reduce dependence on oil through sustainable development of the solid minerals sector.

“Our vision for the mining sector transcends mere resources extraction. We are firmly committed to conducting mining activities that are economically sustainable, socially responsible, and economically beneficial. We believe mining operations should serve as catalysts for community development and job creation and adhere to industry best practices that minimise ecological footprint. ”

“As we convene here today, I want to assure you that the Ministry of Solid Minerals is wholeheartedly dedicated to advancing the Mining Sector in Nigeria. We are actively addressing the historical challenges that have hindered our progress, including infrastructure deficits, inadequate geological data, and the emerging imperative needs for modern mining. Our ongoing efforts also encompass improving the ease of doing business within the sector, enhancing transparency, and enforcing regulations that protect the interests of investors, the environment, the Mining Host Community, and Gender issues.” the Minister emphasised.

Shedding light on his 7-point agenda for the ministry, Alake hinted on plans for the establishment of the National Mining Company; harnessing technological innovation to revolutionise the mining industry; sustained geo-science data generation; empowering local communities by ensuring they benefit from mining activities; enhancing infrastructure development for mining and addressing prevalent security challenges amongst others.

“Nigeria is endowed with valuable solid minerals like Limestone, Gold, Baryte, Bitumen, Lead-Zinc, Coal, and Iron Ore, to mention but a few. This natural wealth indicates a significant reservoir poised for exploration and development. These resources can potentially reduce our dependence on oil revenues, diversify our economic base, serve as the bedrock of sustainable development across various sectors, and provide significant job creation opportunities.” the Minister added.

In his remarks, President Bola Tinubu ably represented by Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) expressed commitment of the administration to make solid minerals rival oil in revenue generation and foreign exchange earnings for the country, promising to support the ministry in making this a reality.

A roll-call of dignitaries at the event include representative of President Bola Tinubu, SGF, Sen. George Akume, Nasarawa State Governor, Abdullahi Sule, Minister of Steel Development, Prince Shuaibu Audu, Minister of Trade, Investments and Industries, Dr. Doris Uzoka-Anitie, MD/CEO African Finance Corporation (AFC), Samaila Zuberu, and a host of other stakeholders in the mining sector.

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