23 November 2015, Lagos – The Federal Government has expressed its willingness to continue to partner the World Bank in the development of the solid minerals sector.
Fayemi, together with the Minister of State for Solid Minerals, Abubakar Bwari, at the meeting, acknowledged the support of the financial institution to infrastructure development in the sector through the ministry.
Fayemi, who noted that the ministry had a proper regulatory framework in place, however, said that there was need for additional work to be done in the area of data.
He also hinted on the need to strengthen the informal sector, while also seeking to attract foreign investment.
He said: “In order to ensure that the ministry is well positioned to be an enabler, a lot needs to be put in place. Additional work needs to be done on data. We need to know the quantity and quality of the minerals we have.
“We need to also attract the big players. We need to know why they are not here,” adding that everything must be done to actualise President Muhammadu Buhari’s mandate to move the sector forward.
Earlier, Benmessaoud, who hailed the excellent relationship between the financial institution and the government of Ekiti State, during Fayemi’s tenure, said the team was delighted to work with the minister in his new assignment.
He stated that the bank was mindful of President Buhari’s emphasis on agriculture and solid minerals as two critical sectors that could boost revenue generation and create jobs for the citizens.
Benmessaoud, who lauded the administration’s plan to diversify the economy through solid minerals development, however, said that the expected revenue may not be realised immediately.