Mining is addressing challenges of youth unemployment, poverty – Bwari
Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Alhaji Abubakar Bwari, while noting some of the feats in Nigeria’s mineral sector, stated that it has contributed immensely in addressing the challenges of youth unemployment and poverty, as well as improve its contributions to the Gross Domestic Product, GDP.
Bwari said this in Abuja at the just concluded meeting between delegates from China and the Nigerian Geological Survey Agency, NGSA on implementation of the subsisting Memorandum of Understanding, MOU.
He said President Muhammadu Buhari is determined to reposition the Mining Sector and has taken decisive steps in advancing the diversification agenda of the Federal Government by derisking the sector in many ways.
“These include the recent commissioning of the Nationwide Integrated Minerals Exploration Programme, NIMEP; acquisition of 26,000 line-kilometres of Electromagnetic data; improved funding of the sector and initiation of the National Council on Mining among other initiatives.
“Moreover, the operationalisation of MOUs with China, Morocco, South Africa and others are also part of the administration’s agenda of raising the contribution of the mining sector to the economy of the nation, and engendering safer mining practices.
“At the onset of this administration, the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development came up with a robust Roadmap for the mining sector with the objective of advancing and adding value to the use of different mineral commodities for the growth and sustainable development of the country.
“Accordingly, one of the key enablers that will fast-track the achievement of these objectives is the building of the necessary technical and other requisite skills that will ensure the supply of steady talent required by the sector in Nigeria.” He said.
Bwari hinted that with over 44 identified and presumably other yet undiscovered minerals in Nigeria, the need for a more defined array of geosciences information, especially geochemical data, becomes essential for mining sector investment and for environmental sustainability.
“This will no doubt contribute to the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan, ERGP target of the present administration.” He added.