The Nigerian government is in the process of enhancing its licensing regulations for international mining corporations, aiming to incentivize increased domestic processing and refining of valuable metals such as lithium and zinc. This strategic move was announced by the Minister of Mines on Tuesday.
During the Nigeria Mining Week event in the capital city of Abuja, Dele Alake unveiled a significant policy. According to this new directive, mining companies will be obligated to present comprehensive business plans demonstrating their strategies for “value addition” processes before being eligible for licensing.
Alake emphasized that this measure is crucial for job creation. He expressed his satisfaction by highlighting that this initiative is already in progress, with several companies having initiated operations within Nigeria.
The minister cited Ganfeng Lithium Industry Ltd, a Chinese company currently constructing a lithium processing facility in the central Nasarawa state, as a prime illustration of the investment the government seeks to encourage.
Alake emphasized the ongoing modernization of the mining industry, revealing that the government is committed to this effort by investing over 15 billion naira ($19.6 million) over a seven-year period. This investment is dedicated to data collection and is being channeled into the National Integrated Mineral Exploration Project (NIMEP) to generate comprehensive mineral data.
In the previous month, Nigeria revealed its intentions to establish a state-backed company aimed at attracting investments for the extraction of various valuable resources, including gold, coal, iron ore, baryte, lead, bitumen, and limestone.