The Bauchi State Government has embarked on aggressive enlightenment of investors, including youths on the huge potential in the solid minerals deposit in the state, an official has said.
Malam Isa Mohammed, the Managing Director, Bauchi Mining Synergy and Exploration Ltd., made the disclosure to the News Agency of Nigeria on Tuesday in Bauchi.
Mohammed said the state was endowed with a variety of solid minerals in commercial quantity, second only to Kaduna State.
“Nature has endowed Bauchi State with an abundance of untapped solid minerals resources which can be broadly categorised into three — metallic ores, non-metallic and gem stones,” he said.
Among the minerals he listed are kaolin, tin, gemstones, granite, talc, quartz, iron ore, gypsum, zircon, calcite, tantalite, chalcopyrite, mica, copper ore, limestone, tourmaline, beryl and garnet.
Others are aquamarine pyrite, rutile, talc, cassiterite, migmatite, columbite, orthoclase, muscovite, aquamarine, topaz, marble, silver, fluorite, zircon, graphite, dolomite, wolfromite, bismuth and others.
The managing director said the government had put in place mouth-watering incentives to attract investors with a view to fully harness and exploit the state’s solid minerals potential.
“What we are trying to do besides putting in place attractive incentives is to come out with reserve estimate of these minerals.
“Our experts are already moving to all nuke and crannies of the state, from one local government to the other, collecting the needed data on the state’s solid mineral deposit,” he added.
Mohammed explained that the government had entered into partnerships with USAID, South African Government, the U.K. and Canada among others to assist in establishing the reserve estimates.
According to him, when concluded the information would be made available to the media and relevant authorities to give potential investors access to information on the huge endowments in the sector.
“The time to invest in the solid minerals sector is now because Nigeria must go beyond oil and be ranked number one solid minerals producing country in Africa as it has the potential to achieve it.
“The states of the nation live as beggars with arms stretched towards Abuja for the monthly stipend that keeps them going. It is time for states to start looking inward,” he said.
Mohammed said the Bauchi State Government had resolved to exploit its solid mineral potential and create other revenue source that would lift it on a pedestal of economic self-reliance.
“Solid mineral development is one of the vital visions of Gov. Isa Yuguda which he believes that when properly harnessed and tapped could sustain the state in terms of revenue generation.
“It is to achieve this goal that the governor established BMESL that will be run under Public Private Partnership arrangement.
“The idea of the company is to maximally exploit the revenue potential of the mineral deposits in the state,” he told NAN.
“The mining company will create a central market where extractors and buyers could meet with a view to sustaining the synergy between the miners and the buyers for the mining business to flourish.
“It will also provide sensitisation workshops and carry out awareness campaigns on mining activities generally.
“The company will also provide skill acquisition programmes with a view to enhancing the productivity of our local miners.
“Currently, we have more than 10 cooperative societies that have registered with us and others are still coming.”
He called on investors to invest in the solid minerals sector, assuring them of high return on investment and that the state had an industrial policy with attractive incentives.
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