Okon Bassey in Uyo,
An indigenous environmental consultancy firm, De Mbarukas Limited is partnering the Federal Ministry of Mines and Steel Development to deepen sustainable development opportunities within the country’s sea-shorelines.
The Managing Director of De Mbarukas Limited, Mr. Joseph Akpan, who disclosed after a meeting with the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Mr. Olamilekan Adegbite, said the move was part of the roadmap of the support, growth and development of the Nigeria’s Mining Industry
According to him the firm was poised to bringing its over 20 years of experience to bear in the mining industry with the objective of ensuring that Nigeria harness the opportunities that mineral resources offer in sustainable and environmentally friendly ways.
He expressed regret that, “in recent times, the domestic mining industry is considered to be underdeveloped leading to Nigeria having to import minerals that she can produce locally like Salt and Iron Ore”.
The Managing Director also urged the Ministry to completely take advantage of the over 30km stretch sea-shoreline of the South-South, particularly Akwa Ibom State, to aid the production of common salt and other mineral resources.
“Apart from the Sodium Chloride, which is the table salt, there are other dissolved chemicals in the ocean water that could also be harvested in commercial quantity,” he stressed
He explained that the cost of salt production could be cheaper as long the ministry would be ready and willing to put necessary infrastructure in place to enable local miners thrive in regions where energy through gas flaring is abundant alongside the natural sunlight.
Akpan also called on the ministry, to “grant permits to investors for the harvesting of solid minerals to the economic advantage of Nigeria.”
In his response, Adegbite, thanked Mbarukas, “for proposing the good business idea of mining salt locally to boost the economy.”
Adegbite also assured De Mbarukas that the ministry would do its best to ensure the idea was developed into a bankable business model that will yield sustainable results.
Also speaking in the meeting, the Minister for State, Dr. Uchechukwu Ogah, expressed the Ministry’s delight that an indigenous firm has deemed it fit to venture into the sector with so much passion.