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Nigeria set to begin processing of raw gold, other minerals —Minister

*Olamilekan Adegbite, Minister for Mines and Steel Development, says adding value to the country’s mineral resources will go a long way in creating employment opportunities and wealth for Nigerians

Gbenga Kayode | ConsumerConnect

Nigeria has fully activated the required process of refining gold, gemstones and other mineral resources across the six geo-political regions of the West African country.

Arc. Olamilekan Adegbite, Honourable Minister for Mines and Steel Development, said this when he appeared on the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) Forum in Abuja, FCT.

Adegbite said the value to the country’s mineral resources will go a long way in creating jobs and wealth for Nigerians.

The Minister disclosed that six plants are being established in the various regions to process mineral resources deposited in those regions in Nigeria.

He stated: “We have set out to do six regional projects, and one of them is the gold souk in Kano, the North-West region.

“Before now, our gold was being exported in its raw form for close to nothing to foreign counter for processing and we end up buying them expensively.

“We have trained people who will make jewellery and they will be resident in the plant.”

According to him, similar plants are also being set up in the North-East, Bauchi for processing kaolin, while in the North Central Kogi State was chosen for establishment of a gold smelting plant .

He stated that in Ibadan, South-West region, gemstone plant has been established while in the South-East, lead processing plant was established in Ebonyi.

The Minister said in the South-South region, baryte processing plant had been established.

Adegbite said: “Nigeria imports baryte to the tune of 300 million Dollars every year.”

The six regional projects are at advanced stage of completion, and will be commissioned soon, the Minister noted.

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