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Federal Government plans post-COVID-19 mining economy

By Cornelius Essen, Abuja
05 May 2020   |   4:07 am
The Federal Government has concluded plans to reinforce its effort to finding new means of revenue streams to galvanise the economy, and grow the Gross Domestic Product...

The Federal Government has concluded plans to reinforce its effort to finding new means of revenue streams to galvanise the economy, and grow the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the wake of the novel COVID-19 pandemic in Nigeria.   

In addition, it has put in place mechanism to enhance economic diversification through the minerals sector by beautification some of the assets like gold to generate the desired revenue into the government’s coffers.

The Minister of State for Mines and Steel Development, Dr. Uchechukwu Sampson Ogah, stated this at a webinar Conference tagged: “Nigeria in the Age of COVID-19,” held recently. 

Ogah, who was represented by Chief of Staff, Kelechi Ekugo, also explained that mining would be used as a key player for industrial development in the country, adding that the Ministry is developing a framework for the optimisation of revenue generation from the sector.

 
He also said modalities have been put in place to ensuring that miners pay royalties due to the Federal government, adding that a database of all miners in Nigeria is being created for proper monitoring and collection of royalties. 

Stressing that the Federal Government is bent on stamping out illegal mining, and ensuring good and lawful mining practices, Oga said the Ministry has been working to get artisanal and small scale miners to form co-operative societies with a view to assisting them access funds.

Earlier, one of the panellists, Cheta Nwanze, commended the Federal Government for working to formalise and document artisanal miners, and called on states to find alternative ways of generating revenue other than relying on the monthly allocation.

He also urged the private sector to get more involved and engage the government in policy making to ensure the full representation of their interest.

Contributing, Chris Newsom, agreed that Nigeria’s economic survival after COVID-19 would depend totally on diversification from crude oil.

Just as Juliana Elaturoti, added that this era should be a wakeup call for the country to explore the non-oil sector to grow its GDP, and urged the Ministry to implore and encourage small scale miners to process the raw materials to meet international best practices.