By Michael Peter, The Sight News
Abuja: Nigerians have been asked to expect a more friendly mining environment that is responsive to the country’s needs of becoming a mining nation,quest for sustainable mining environment as well as to the needs of investors.
Making this disclosure on Thursday, the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development pointed out that recommendations from the upcoming maiden edition of the National Council on Mining and Mineral Resources holding in Abuja will form basis for initiating robust policies that will increase the contribution of the mining sector to the nation’s economy.
The Minister of State for Mines and Steel Development, Abubakar Bawa Bwari while addressing newsmen in Abuja, said the meeting will provide the platform for those interested in mining to brainstorm and provide critical inputs for policy formulation, validation and other efforts aimed at reforming the sector.
“The National Council on Mining and Mineral Resources Development is an interactive platform where stakeholders meet annually to advise and recommend ways of improving the sector. It is advisory in nature but we are determined to ensure that its deliberations and recommendations form part of the ministry’s policies and programmes in future”.
The Minister disclosed that the Council members are drawn from the National and States houses of Assembly, commissioners and permanent secretaries in charge of all relevant federal and State ministries, agencies and parastatals.
“The organised private sector, security agencies, tertiary institutions, industry players, labour unions and other professional associations, civil society organizations, artesanal and small scale miners, representatives of specialized agencies of the United Nations, development partners, women in mining and local mining communities” he added.
He noted that the reason for the vast membership is to have as complete a pool of ideas as possible so that contributions from practically all those involved in the mining value chain can be at the disposal of the Ministry.
“Our hope is that the views of such diverse experts will enable us to fully exploit the potentials of the sector for revenue generation, job creation and sustainable mining practices”.
According to the Minister, some of the issues to be deliberated upon by the council will include; mineral sector governance: challenges of federal/regional cooperation, illegal mining and export challenges, mines field etc.
The meeting is set to hold in Abuja on Monday 12 to Wednesday 14 September 2017.