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Solid minerals exploration opportunities in Nigeria


Barites occur in Nigeria as vein infilling materials associated with lead-zinc lodes and veins in the both Pre Cambrian basement and Cretaceous sedimentary rocks of the lower and middle Benue valley. The mineral commonly occurs as white, reddish brown and clear varieties with specific gravity varying between 3.5 and 4.4. The width of the veins ranges from a few centimetres to 5.3 metres. Lengths of veins also vary from a few metres -4500m.

Preliminary survey carried out by the Geological survey of Nigeria in 1959 put the estimated reserve at 41,000 tones for the Benue valley deposits. Also the Nigerian Mining Corporation estimated the resource of 70,000 tonnes in the Azara deposit in Nassarawa State. Recently the Nigerian Geological Survey Agency embarked on the evaluation of newly reported deposits in i) Cross Rivers ii) Benue iii) Nassarawa iv) Plateau v)Taraba States. The inferred resource estimated for four of the states (Benue, Cross River, Nassrawa and Taraba) where mining is considered viable is 21,123,913 metric tons.

Coal and power generation

Nigeria has major coal resources that have not been well explored or exploited. The government has recently placed a high priority on utilizing those resources to increase the country’s electrical generating capacity. Nigeria’s goal is to revitalize the coal mining industry and expand power generation by attracting foreign companies to develop these large coal resources and construct coal-fired generating plants that will connect to the country’s electrical distribution grid

Coal occurs in several areas in Nigeria and ranges from bituminous to lignite. The coal deposits of the Anambra Basin, located in south-eastern Nigeria, appear to contain the largest and most economically viable coal resources. This basin covers an area of approximately 1.5 million hectares and is constrained by the Niger River on the west, the Benue River.


Gold in Nigeria is found in alluvial and elluvial placers and primary veins from several parts of supercrustal (schist) belts in the Northwest and Southwest of Nigeria The most common occurrences are found in the Maru, Anka, Malele, Tsohon Birnin Gwari-Kwaga, Gurmana, Bin Yauri, Okolom-Dogondaji and Iperindo areas, all associated with the schist belts of the Northwest and Southwest Nigeria. There are also a number of smaller occurrences beyond these major areas

Iron Ore

Two broad types of iron ore occur prominently in Nigeria. They are:

(i) Banded iron formation which occur in folded bands and lenses associated with the Precambrian meta-sedimentary schist belts prominently outcropping in the Western half of the country. Prominent locations include Tajimi, Itakpe, Ajabanoko, Ochokochoko Toto, Farin Ruwa, Birnin Gwari, Maru, Jamare, Kaura Namoda, Kakun, Isanlu, Roni and Ogbomosho areas.

(ii) The Cretaceous sedimentary (oolitic) iron deposits, occur prominently around Agbaja, Kotonkarfi, Nsudde areas in the North Central and South Eastern zones of the country respectively

Lead/Zinc-Exploration opportunities in Nigeria

Lead-Zinc occurrences in Nigeria are associated with saline water intrusion in the sedimentary basins or fractured/shear zones in crystalline rocks. The mineralization is often associated with minor to significant amounts of copper and sliver, occurring in lodes filing and fractures within the sedimentary rocks in the Benue trough as well as in crystalline basement rocks as shown in recent studies by Nigerian Geological Survey Agency

Tarsands & Bitumen-Exploration opportunities in Nigeria

Extensive bituminous seepage and sediments impregnated with tarry oil define a narrow band about 5-8km wide between latitude 60 37’N and 60 48’N, stretching from just East of Ijebu-Ode (Ogun) to the banks of the tributaries of the Siluko River at Ofosu Village in Edo State, an approximate distance of 110km.


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