The Ministry of Solid Minerals Development, under the auspices of the Federal Government (FG), has approved approximately 499 licenses for the buying and selling of solid minerals in Nigeria for the year 2023.

Federal Government (FG)
Federal Government (FG)

This information was conveyed by the Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dele Alake, during the Solid Minerals Conference in Abuja.

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Key Points:

License Distribution:

A total of 146 licenses were allocated for the trade of lithium, surpassing other minerals such as gold (91 licenses), tin (46), and coal (32). Additional minerals covered by the licenses include tantalite, iron ore, kaolin, feldspar, beryl, barite, columbite, mica, and aquamarine.

Shareholding in New Solid Minerals Company:

The Federal Government aims to hold approximately 25% of the N1 billion share capital of the Nigerian Solid Minerals Corporation. Legislation for establishing the institution is in progress, envisioning a share structure where Nigerian citizens hold 25% through public shares, and private investors each have a maximum of 10%.

Creation of Legislation for the Corporation:

The process of creating legislation for the Nigerian Solid Minerals Corporation has begun. The Solid Minerals Committee of the House of Representatives plans to conduct the first policy dialogue on the proposed law on February 12 and 13, 2024.

Registered Mining Co-operatives:

The campaign against illegal mining has yielded positive results, with 2,329 registered artisanal miners’ co-operatives in the country. In 2023 alone, 123 co-operatives were registered, 77 of which chose to register following government appeals.

Minister Dele Alake stressed the importance of learning from past challenges, particularly those faced by the defunct Nigerian Mining Corporation, to ensure the sustainability of the new solid minerals company.

Additionally, ongoing efforts seek to enhance the Nigerian Mining and Minerals Act of 2007, and the ministry continues to provide support to mining co-operatives, including bookkeeping skills and drilling techniques.