Canada takes interest in Nigeria’s mining resources

Oscarline Onwuemenyi

09 March 2013, Sweetcrude, ABUJA – Canadian mining giants have indicated interest to invest in the development of Nigeria’s mining and steel industry, giving positive impetus to the various efforts of the Federal Government at attracting foreign direct investments (FDIs) into the nation’s mining industry.

The investment intension was made known when the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Arc. Musa Mohammed Sada received in audience at the Canadian High Commissioner to Nigeria, his Excellency Chris Cooter and the Deputy High Commissioner, H.E Jean J. Gautheir in his office.

The Minister who described the meeting as timely said the federal government was working proactively at diversifying the economy of the country to other sectors particularly minerals and metal sector.

He noted that the regulatory frameworks which are being operated in the nation’s mining industry are Canadian based, adding that, draft copies of the mining regulations were circulated to prospective mining investors at the last Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada, (PDAC). Forum in Canada for additional inputs in order to have regulatory frameworks that conforms to international best practices for the nation’s mining industry.

Arc. Sada informed the delegation that the federal Government has already put in place a Committee on Bitumen for the Country to develop its bitumen belt.

He disclosed that he had directed the Chairman of the committee to liaise with the Canadian Embassy on the way forward for the exploration of the bitumen resources.

He disclosed that the state governments where the solid minerals resources for the economic development of their states and the country.

The Minister reiterated the Federal government’s readiness to collaborate with state governments and the private sector in the sustainable growth of the minerals and metal sector.

He assured the delegation that Nigerian Government would do necessary things to facilitate operations of investors in the minerals and metal sector for the benefit of investors and Nigerians.

On the invitation for participation at international Convention, Trade Show and Investors Exchange under the auspices of the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada, (PDAC) in Canada next year, the Minister assured that the ministry would attend.

PDAC is a yearly event that normally attract over 100 countries since its inception 39 years ago to present the opportunity of sharing of ideas and networking on new development in the mining industry.

Speaking earlier, the High Commissioner of Canada, his Excellency, Chris Cooter who led the delegation said the purpose of their visit was to indicate their interest as well as seek for area of collaboration in the development of the nation’s mining industry.

The High Commissioner commended the existing healthy economic relationship between Canada and Nigeria, expressing the preparedness of Canadian Government to foster more cooperation.

He said Canada is the second largest mining country in the world with about 250 mining operators dotted around the globe in countries like Zambia, Tanzania, Liberia, Congo among others.

He extended the invitation of the Canadian Government to the Minister for participation in the forthcoming (PDAC) forum in Canada, stressing that this would go a long way at boosting the economic relationship between the two countries.

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