Chineme Okafor in Abuja
The Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) has said that Nigeria exported more lead and zinc ore in 2014 than any other solid minerals mined and extracted in the country for export.
NEITI said this in the 2014 audit report of activities in the country’s solid minerals sector which it released recently in Abuja.
According to it, a total of 67,164.02 tons of lead and zinc ore worth $23,561,886.63 were extracted and exported from the country in 2014, making them the highest exported solid minerals in the country for that period.
Following this were columbite and gold ore and concentrates (ounces) with extracted volumes and export worth of 960 and 500 tons, as well as $721,806.60 and $600,000 respectively. 773.80 tons of copper ore worth $466,568.90 was also mined and exported in 2014.
It, however, said that the total value of exported solid minerals from Nigeria within the period was $26,136,471.87.
The audit report was commissioned by NEITI as part of its obligation to the global Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) and prepared by Amedu Onekpe and Co. It recorded quantities of minerals produced, utilised and exported from Nigeria, as well as the revenue flows amongst the extractive companies in the solid minerals sector of Nigeria.
On income generation, the report said the solid mineral sector generated N55,814,890,891.83 in 2014, out of which the cement manufacturing sector contributed 57.8 per cent of the total accruable to the sector or N32,288,697,345.37, the construction sector was 40.7 per cent or N22,730,916,131.60 of the total income, while the mining and quarry sector gave 1.4 per cent or N795,277,414.85.
It equally noted that while Nigeria’s total export at Free on Board (FOB) in 2014 was $2,497,445,196.64 excluding oil and gas, the solid minerals sector accounted for about four per cent of this total export.
According to it, the sector also contributed 0.11 per cent to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Products (GDP) ratio within the year.
The report stated in its observations on the progress of the solid minerals sector that it was at the moment contributing less than the proportion it should have done if it was given the necessary attention.
“Specifically, the sector is presently dominated by unskilled artisanal small scale miners. Organised mining activities are restricted to a few operators in the sector,” it added.
It also said: “It was observed that some companies reported the same level of production from January to December even though explosive consumption was observed to differ during the period under review. This is a clear evidence of under-declaration, leading to significant loss of revenue to the government.”