Mr Fadi Ghazale, the Chief Executive Officer, AG Vision Mining Company has called for adequate funding for the mining sector to unravel the hidden mineral potential across the country.
Ghazale made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on the sidelines of the just-concluded three days Nigeria-Africa Natural Resources and Energy Investment Summit in Abuja.
According to him, Nigeria is endowed with different minerals in large quantities but continous exploration is needed to uncover them.
“The mining sector needs funding; it needs proper projects that will help the sector to uncover its vast minerals.
“The same way that the Nigerian government wears the cap of oil and gas, it should also be wearing the cap of solid minerals because this is the future.
“Beyond doubt, Nigeria is highly blessed with minerals, there is a reality that Nigeria is a monoculture.
“It has been relying on oil and gas since over 50 years now and the solid mineral sector has been abandoned.
“Nigeria has so many minerals that are related to energy like for the production of battery but we the exploration company have gotten the chances to prove that these minerals exist in economic quantities,” he said.
He said that the company had recorded many successes in the past years on mineral exploration being conducted for the Nigeria mining sector.
“We have been having a lot of successful projects and collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Mines and the National Geological Survey.
“We do sampling geological mapping, geochemical sampling among others; we collect samples from underground to quantify the amount of minerals in a particular area.”
Ghazale said that the company had covered about 330,000 sq km exploration work across the country and mostly in the western part.
“This is the kind of indicator that tells about the prospect of minerals in Nigeria; we worked in Kaduna, Niger, Zamfara among others.”
He said that Nigeria could surpass Burkina Faso, Ghana and other mining countries that were into real mining due to their abundant mineral potential.
“We believe that Nigeria has more mineral potential than other countries but is just that they are under explored.
“So more funding is required for exploration, the same drive that Nigeria explores oil and gas, the same zeal should be put in the solid minerals.’
On insecurity, he said that the Federal Government and state government had provided the company with a safe environment to execute its projects.
” No doubt, we had some security challenges at the course of our operations, I believe no where in the world is safe today.
“We cannot say that some countries are safer than Nigeria even, sub Sahara has its own problems and security issues.”