This is seen as part of the government’s effort towards the diversification of Nigeria’s economy to create employment and earn more foreign exchange in addition to exploiting the country’s potential in the mining sector.
This disclosure was made by the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Olamilekan Adegbite, in Abuja on Sunday, while speaking at a forum of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), in which he described the Segilola Gold Project as a strategic investment for Nigeria’s economic diversification.
The minister described the company as a poster child and the first foreign investor that was doing genuine and serious business in Nigeria.
Adegbite revealed that the firm was supposed to have started gold exportation in the first quarter of 2021 but that the date was shifted, due to the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic.
What the Minister of Mines and Steel is saying
Adegbite stated, “The company will start exporting gold from Nigeria in June.’’
He said that the project is being executed by Segilola Resource Operating Ltd., a licensed operator and Canadian company, located in Iperindo in Osun.
He disclosed that the company which was listed and quoted on the Toronto Stock Exchange in Canada, the eighth largest exchange in the world by market capitalisation, commanding some 3.1 trillion dollars, is trying to ensure compliance with the economic diversification agenda of the Federal Government.
The minister said, “Mining is a bit capital intensive. So, we need to attract serious players, people who can put in the money and then, of course, begin to make money after some investment because it has a gestation period.
“Mining is not like trading where you put in your money today and then realise profit tomorrow. When you do exploration, it can take a year to three years, then you discover the mineral and then start the exploitation before money begins to roll in.”
What you should know
- It can be recalled that in August 2020, Adegbite had announced that Nigeria was set to commence gold production with the launch of the Segilola Gold Project in Osun State.
- The take-off of the project would make Nigeria a major gold producing country and hasten the diversification of the economy and reduction of unemployment.
- This is also coming after President Muhammadu Buhari unveiled the first batch of the Presidential Artisanal Gold Mining Development Initiative gold, which is expected to be part of Nigeria’s external reserve after being purchased by the Central Bank of Nigeria.
- According to proven surveys, Nigeria has discovered large quantities of gold in Zamfara, Kebbi, Niger, Kaduna, Osun, Kwara, and the FCT.