13 February 2021 By Georgina Humphrey
The Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Mr. Olamilekan Adegbite says Government is working on policies that will enable the country to fully harness potential in gold deposits.
Adegbite made this known while declaring open a gold event organized by Kian Smith Refinery in Partnership with the Ministry tagged “Lagos Love Gold”.
The minister who explained that there are huge gold deposits in different parts of the country waiting to be explored assured that the federal government would put in place modalities to encourage the private sector invest in the mining sector.
“We act as facilitators to entrepreneurs, government is putting policies in place that would harness all these activities and bring out people from the shadows into mining.”
He said government is taking the right measures to discourage illegal exportation of gold and called on those who wish to export gold to do it the right way .
“It is legal for people to export gold out of the country, the process is very simple, with 3% royalty paid on the value of the gold you want to take out and by that we give you an export certificate with which you can take your gold to anywhere in the world and sell at premium price” he added.
Adegbite also stated that there is a policy in place that bans exportation of raw ore and emphasized the need for value addition.
According to him “the government is preventing exportation of raw gold where value is added outside the country but promoting exportation of processed gold, we need to add value locally, we need to retain the value in Nigeria, thereby, creating jobs for our teeming youths”
He said the Ministry is currently training many Nigerians who would become trainers on how to add value to Nigerian gold, such as jewelry making, gemstone cutting and polishing.
This, according to him is geared towards attaining the Ministry’s mandate of creating jobs, diversifying the economy and earning revenue for government.
He said the Ministry’s collaboration with Kian Smith refinery is a way of encouraging and supporting private sector driven initiatives adding that the “Lagos Love Gold” is a continuation of the Kano “ Gold Durban” and “Quaga Dore” in Burkinafaso that is harnessing the gold in West African region.
Earlier, the Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Dr. Oluwatoyin Akinlade said the Ministry would work with stakeholders and development partners to develop the Nigerian gold mining sector and boost gold activities in the West African sub region.
In her welcome address, the Chairman, Kian Smith Refinery, Nere Emiko
said “Lagos Love Gold” event was aimed at showcasing local and regional jewelry makers and designers as well as providing an exclusive shopping experience.