By Gabriel Ewepu
ABUJA—THE Acting President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, yesterday, disclosed that the country’s mining sector will receive $600 million investment fund through the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority, the Nigerian Stock Exchange and others.
Osinbajo made the disclosure while declaring open the ongoing three-day National Mining Summit, with the theme, ‘Unearthing Nigeria’s Mining Sector’, in Abuja.
He expressed optimism that with the recently launched Economic Recovery and Growth Plan, the country will achieve its target of seven per cent economic growth rate by 2020, with more aggressive growth rate of 8.54 percent for the mining sector.
The Acting President said the sector will contribute $27 billion to the country’s GDP in 2025.
He said: “I am pleased to be here today joining you at this national mining summit. Importantly it underscores the earth moving task before us and the enormous opportunities. Yes we need to unearth this incredible source of growth and development for us before our continent.
“This summit marks another step towards achieving the Africa mining vision. That vision adopted by African heads of states back in 2009 aims at leveraging Africa vast mineral resources, to liberate the continent from the shackles of poverty and perpetual underdevelopment and to change the African narrative from the so called resource curse, mineral field conflicts, severe environmental degradation and marginalised host communities, to one of sustainable growth and social economic development underpinned by transparent, equitable and optimum exploitation of mineral resources and inclusive development.
“For us in Nigeria, this summit is also a key step towards implementing our economic recovery and growth plan launched in April by President Buhari. The mining sector is a priority for the Nigerian government and a crucial part of our economic growth and diversification agenda.
“We have also secured funding from both domestic and international sources for investment in the solid mineral industry. From the public purse, the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development has been granted access to the mining sector component of our natural resources development fund for a sum of N30bn , approximately a $100m, an intervention fund from the federal government.
‘’This is partly to help provide cheap loans and grants to industry participants as well as for direct investing in foundational infrastructure.”