22 May 2021 By Georgina Humphrey
The steel industry is the bedrock of the industrial growth of any nation.
It is so vital to the development of any nation that every country tries to control to acquire and take control for Rapid socio economic development even when the raw material is are not available locally.
For instance, Japan and South Korea, who are among the largest producers of steel in the world today, do not have the raw materials for steel production locally.
The giant technological stride that they achieved over the years is attributable to the development of the steel industry.
Today, over 80% of the world’s industrial goods and infrastructure are steel based.
Furthermore, products of the integrated Steel Company sustain spare parts and components of the industries that produce these goods.
To this end, Radio Nigeria in an exclusive interview in Abuja sought the economic benefits of the steel industry to the nation from the Director General of the National Metallurgical Development Centre Jos, NMDC, Prof Linus Asuquo.
Prof Asuquo in his submission explained that Since the Second World War, nations of the world have come to appreciate the unique role of steel as the base for rapid technological progress which has also become an index of National Power.
He said Steel enabled Britain to launch the first industrial Revolution and Western Europe to colonize most of the World.
According to him, Germany overran Europe while Japan suddenly leapt to the forefront of modern technology.
Similarly the United States became a supreme post-war global power as it systematically boosted its steel capacity to and excelled in Europe.
The Director General of the NMDC stressed that the Steel Industry would continue to serve as a stimulus to national development and economy booster to industrial development of any country.
“The industry will serve as the backbone of industrialization of our great country, Nigeria if all the necessary parameters are put in place.
The benefits of having a functional steel industry will translate to a functional country” he added
He noted that the steel industry will contribute to all the facets of the economy, including the important role steel plays in economic development and growth.
He appealed for the completion of the steel industry like Ajaokuta Steel Company Limited located at Ajaokuta in Kogi State noting that the steel industry was conceptualized as far back as 1958, because of the vital and strategic role it plays in the transformation of the economy.
The NMDC helmsman stated that if the steel industry had been completed, commissioned and effectively operated thirty-four years ago as conceptualized in the vision of the initiators, Nigeria would have been a different country in terms of industrial and economic development today.