The Nigerian Government said it banned the export of raw gold from Nigeria to avoid the same mistakes the country made with the crude oil regime.
The Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Mr Olamilekun Adegbite, disclosed this on Sunday during an interview in Abuja.
He explained that the ‘Down Stream Mineral Policy’, which was introduced recently by the Federal Government, will enable a thriving industrial refining sector in Africa’s largest economy.
“If you mine and you cannot process it yourself, you can sell it off to processors in Nigeria. These processors would either buy it off you totally or process and resell or they can process and return it to you. So, that is the policy in Nigeria now because we do not want to lose jobs or wealth to other countries,” the Minister explained.
The inspiration for the idea: He added that when he resumed office in 2019, he noticed the mining sector was going the way of oil and gas as a full mineral export industry.
“You know what we do in the oil and gas sector. We export crude oil and import petroleum into the country by that we export all our jobs out. So, I said we cannot make the same mistake with mining so I started very early in 2019 to develop a policy called Down Stream Mineral Policy,” he said.
A lucrative mining sector: He also noted that minerals mined in Nigeria can be used for a broad range of industries, citing kaolin which abounds in Bauchi State and is used by the pharmaceutical industry. As the Minister pointed out, different sectors use Kaolin, including the pharmaceutical, plastic, cosmetics, and paint industries.
Meanwhile, Nigeria’s gold mining industry has attracted the attention of global giants, including Barrick Gold Corp. and Rio Tinto Group who have expressed interest in Nigeria’s rapidly growing gold mining industry.
Nigeria’s mining sector suffered a decline in economic productivity, causing a -21.31% growth decline as of Q3 2022.
The contribution of the mining and quarrying sector to the GDP dropped to 5.90% in Q3 2022. This is lower by 10.75% points and 10.21% points, respectively, compared to the figures for Q3 2021 and Q2 2022.Follow us on social media