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Nigeria, US explore strategic partnership in development of mining sector

Dr. Oladele ALake, Honourable Minister for Solid Minerals Development (r) and  David J. Greene, Deputy Chief of Mission, United States Embassy, in the Minister's Office in Abuja, FCT       Photo: State House

*Dr. Oladele Alake, Minister for Solid Minerals Development, describes the United States as Nigeria’s longstanding ally and strategic partner for the development of the country’s mining industry, welcoming the US partnership on investments in mining value chain, expanding access to technology as well as securing mining areas

Gbenga Kayode | ConsumerConnect

In expanding the frontiers of collaborations cum investments in the sector of the economy, Dr. Oladele Alake, Honourable Minister for Solid Minerals Development, has described the United States (US) as Nigeria’s longstanding ally and strategic partner for the development of country’s mining industry.

Segun Tomori, Special Assistant to the Minister on Media, in a statement issued Friday, February 2, 2024, said Dr. Alake, while receiving David Greene, Charge d’Affairs of the US Embassy, in his office Thursday, February 1 lauded the Amercian country’s commitment to fostering cooperation with Nigeria in diverse sectors of the economy.

The Minister stated the US underscores the significance of the smooth bilateral relations between both countries.

Alake also said: “I thank you for your visit. I met the US Assistant Secretary of State for Energy Resources, Geoffrey Pyatt, on the sidelines of the Mines and Money Conference in London past year, and we had a fruitful engagement.

“I did analyse all our issues, and fundamentally, we just want to diversify our economy from oil. Not just for our own economic survival but also to be in tune with global trends for reduction in global warming.

“We also want to be part of the move to reduce global emissions and put our mining sector on the global map. We have critical minerals that are in commercial demand globally.”

He as well welcomed partnership with the US on investments in the mining value chain, expanding access to technology in extracting and processing minerals and securing mining areas.

In his remarks, the US Ambassador to Nigeria commended the renewed interest of Nigeria in solid minerals, stressing that the sector has huge potential to rival the contribution of oil to the West African country’s economy.

The envoy also noted that Nigeria and US have had decades of cultural ties, cooperation in security agriculture amongst others.

Greene stated: “Your mining sector has huge potentials and we are interested in collaborating to invest in extracting and processing of minerals alongside providing training and knowledge transfer to the security agencies to assist in securing your mining environment.”

Explaining the Federal Government’s reforms, Alake also highlighted revised Community Development Agreement (CDA) guidelines geared towards reducing friction in host communities; ongoing plans for new security architecture to secure natural resources; efforts to generate big geo-data; the formalisation of artisanal miners into cooperatives among others.

He further stated: “The mining sector provides a veritable avenue for increased trade between Nigeria and the United States, especially in the area of value addition, which implies processing of extracted minerals and setting up factories here.

“We would also require financing from multilateral institutions for our local operators. We are providing incentives for  investments like tax waivers for mining equipment, policy of full repatriation of profits to home countries amongst others.”

The US diplomat equally assured the Minister for Solid Minerlas Development that his country is exploring investment in Nigeria’s mining value chain.

The global energy transition from fossil fuels to critical metals makes it imperative for both countries to harness areas of comparative advantage for strategic collaboration, added Greene.

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