Event Category: Exhibitions
Theme: DEVELOPMENT AND OPTIMISATION OF NIGERIA’S SOLID MINERAL SECTOR FOR NATIONAL DEVELOPMENT: The Role of Chemical Engineering.
With the dwindling oil revenue and the need to diversify the Nigerian economy, one of the major sectors that hitherto neglected and, which can contribute greatly to the nation’s GDP is the Solid Mineral Sector.
Mining as a major economic activity has a long history in Nigeria. Its importance could only be compared to agriculture as both sectors were once the only sources of production in the Nigerian economy. The mining of minerals in Nigeria presently accounts for less than 1% of its GDP due to the influence of its vast oil resources. The domestic mining industry is underdeveloped, leading to Nigeria having to import minerals that it could produce domestically. The South African mining sector for instance contributes 18.7% to its over $GDP.
According to the report of an independent audit of the Nigeria solid minerals sector conducted for the year 2012 by the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), Nigeria earned a total of 31.449 billion Naira in 2012 as against 26.925Billion Naira in 2011, showing an increase of 17%. The report further stated that, the Solid Minerals sector is still a “minor productive sector with low contributions to the main macro-economic areas of the economy”. For instance, the sector accounted for a meager 0.02% of total exports earnings and 0.14% of new employments in the country by the end of 2012. However, out of the 17,000 jobs created by the Solid minerals sector in 2012, 96% were Nigerian hires.
Furthermore, recently the Nigerian government reiterated that the mining sector in Nigeria must aspire to contribute between 5-10% to the GDP. This is a tall order bearing in mind the state of our solid mineral development. Therefore, this conference is to examine these issues and come out with ways to improve on the processing and optimisation of solid minerals in Nigeria.
The overall objective is to increase the contributions of the solid mineral sector to the nation’s GDP and to save the nation foreign exchange, by improving value addition and reduce the export of raw minerals. This will eventually translate to wealth and job creation for our teaming unemployed Nigerians.