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COVID-19: FG will prioritize mining to reposition economy – Minister

COVID-19: FG will prioritize mining to reposition economy – Minister

The Federal Government has reiterated its determination to commit more resources and efforts to optimize the revenue generation and employment opportunities in the mining sector. It also said it will improve the contributions of the mining sector to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the wake of falling oil prices caused largely by COVID-19 pandemic globally.
The Minister of State for Mines and Steel Development, Dr. Uchechukwu Ogah, gave this assurance during a Webinar Conference tagged ‘Nigeria in the Age of COVID-19’. Ogah, who was represented by his Chief of Staff, Kelechi Ekugo at the conference, disclosed that the ministry had doubled its effort in diversifying the Nigerian economy through the solid minerals sector by beautification of some minerals such as gold to generate desired revenue to regrow and revamp the economy.
He added that the sector would be used as the key for industrial development in the country.
This is even as he disclosed that the ministry, in collaboration with its agencies, was developing a framework for the optimisation of revenue generation from the sector, adding that modalities had been put in place to ensure that miners pay royalties due to the government.
Similarly, the minister explained that the ministry was also developing a database of all miners in the country for proper monitoring and collection of royalties as well as curbing illegal mining and ensuring good and lawful mining practices. Earlier, one of the panelists, Cheta Nwanze, commended the government on its plans to formalize artisanal mining in the country and charged state governments to find creative ways of generating revenue other than mainly relying on allocations from Federation Accounts for their funding needs. Another panelist, Chris Newsom, agreed that the economic survival of the country after COVID-19 would depend totally on diversification from oil and gas to the non-oil sectors. Juliana Elaturoti, an industrial operator, described the COVID-19 pandemic as a call for the country to explore the non-oil sector in growing its GDP.

Source: https://www.dailytrust.com.ng/covid-19-fg-will-prioritize-mining-to-reposition-economy-minister.html