The Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG), Mr. 'Laoye Jaiyeola said the NESG recognised the huge potential in the mining and manufacturing sectors and that the sectors could help to create jobs and reduce government reliance on the oil sector.
Jaiyeola said this in his contributions during a Webinar organised by the group with the theme "Post-COVID-19: Impact and opportunities in the mining industry."
Commenting, the President of Miners Association of Nigeria, Alhaji Kabiru Kankara, said the mining sector required government's support to thrive and that such support can come through equipment leasing, capacity building and financial incentives.
The co-chair of the Mining Policy Commission and the President of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), Engineer Mansur Ahmed, who was represented by Mr. Tochukwu, appreciated the efforts of the ministry in revitalising the mining industry and stated that a proper framework will ensure the growth of the industry.
The Director-General of the Nigeria Geological Survey Agency (NGSA) Dr. Abdulrasak Garba, disclosed that the agency was working to improve its data centre and website to make data management and communication on the mining sector accessible to everyone.
In his remarks, the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Architect Olamilekan Adegbite, restated the commitment of the federal government to diversify the economy, particularly by exploring opportunities in the mining sector to leverage its recovery in the post-COVID-19 era.
"Nigeria has 44 minerals in over 500 locations, which can help to provide revenue and bolster the economy" the minister stated.
Adegbite hinted that with the extension of the Warri-Itakpe railway line to Abuja and the completion of the Ajaokuta Steel Company, more jobs would be created and economic development, which will affect the upstream and downstream sub-sectors of the mining industry.
He also said the resuscitation of the Ajaokuta Steel Company would help resuscitate the Delta and Osogbo steel companies through private sector participation, adding that by 2025, the mining industry should be able to contribute to 5 percent of Nigeria's Gross domestic product (GDP).