Steel production, a benchmark for technological advancement – Minister

Adegbite called on stakeholders to put heads together to change the narrative for the country to regain its lost glory.

Mr Olamilekan Adegbite

The Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Mr Olamilekan Adegbite, said a nation must have its own steel production to be technologically-advanced and make progress economically.

Adegbite said this while inspecting facilities at the National Metallurgical Development Centre (NMDC) and National Institute of Mining and Geosciences (NIMG) in Jos on Friday.

He said there was vast existing potential untapped in the mines and steel sector.

Adegbite called on stakeholders to put heads together to change the narrative for the country to regain its lost glory.

“Any nation that wants to be independent and wants to make progress technologically must have its own steel production.

“Without this at the centre, Nigeria cannot make it. A lot has been done here but more needs to be done for this centre to reach its full potential.

“I’m calling on all stakeholders to put heads together to change the narrative for the country to gain its lost glory,” he said.

The minister said that contribution of NIMG to the Nigerian economy was enormous, saying that the institution was training many people in gemstone identification, polishing and cutting.

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He said the training was to allow Nigerians use and add value to its gemstones instead of exporting them to other nations in raw form.

Adegbite said he would collaborate with the Minister of State and Permanent Secretary to source for fund that would make the two agencies live up to expectations and serve Nigeria as they were meant to do.

Earlier, the Director-General, NMDC, Mr Linus Asuquo, said the centre was one of the key agencies in the mineral and metal sector that was crucial in adding value and development in the mineral processing chain.

Asuquo appealed to the minister to prioritise research and development for the diversification of the economy.

He said additional equipment to operate the Electric Arc Furnace for work on steel, testing and commissioning of the Lead Smelting Pilot Plant would increase capacity to conduct research in the production of brasses and other non-ferrous metals.

 

(NAN)

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