The Minister of Mines and Steel Development (MMSD), Arc. Olamilekan Adegbite has said the Federal Government will enact policies to help develop the downstream industries to add value to mined mineral resources.
Adegbite was speaking at the opening ceremony of the first downstream mineral workshop on Nigerian Mineral Value Chain Policy (NMVCP) held in Abuja yesterday.
He said, “For far too long, Nigeria has been unwittingly exporting wealth and employment, by not adding value to our mineral sectors.
“We are ready to change this narrative. We are resolved to enact policies to help develop the downstream industries that add value to our mineral resources, such as beneficiation, smelting and refining,” he said.
The Minister noted that the dominance of China and other Asian countries in the Nigerian solid mineral sector has contributed little to the value chain.
“China dominates mining in Nigeria with minimal roles for Nigerian firms. The raw minerals exported out are used to produce consumer and industrial goods for sale in global markets at much higher prices than what’s paid for the raw materials. The export of raw natural resources is a legacy of colonialism,” he said.
The Director General Raw Materials Research and Development Council (RMRDC), Prof. Hussaini Doko Ibrahim who spoke on mining and markets for downstream sector, said the mineral industry is a key driver of economic growth and development of several nations of the world.