IMICON 2007 to Spur Mining Expansion in Nigeria

IMICON 2007 to Spur Mining Expansion in Nigeria

The nation’s mining sector is on the threshold of a major expansion, as the 2nd International Mining Investment Conference and Exhibition on Nigeria (IMICON 2007) will take place from February 13 to 15 2007, at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja.

The forum, described as the biggest annual mining event in the country, is being organised by Abuja based Mineral Watch Consults Ltd.

Following the maiden edition of the conference/exhibition(June 2006), and coupled with aggressive marketing of the nation’s 34 solid minerals by the Ministry of Solid Minerals Development, 44 firms comprising Nigerian companies and their foreign counterparts were pre-qualified and bided for bitumen blocks, coal properties and Nigerian Mining Corporation( NMC) titles.”This top level event will attract major public and private sector stakeholders in the solid mineral sector as well as local and foreign mining companies and financial institutions who are ready to do business in the sector,” said the company’s Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Sulaiman Ibrahim.

On the thrusts of the forthcoming edition, the Mineral Watch boss, said that it includes the followings among others:

*To bring investors, miners, bankers, financial institutions, solid mineral traders, consultants and professionals in the solid mineral business and the government policy makers together.

*To expose local and foreign companies in the solid mineral business to Nigerian banks that have positioned to take a leading role in mining revolution in the country.

*To help industrialists to access cheap raw materials on a sustained basis from the mining industry.

*To provide an opportunity for junior and major mining companies to review geological data from the Geological Agency of Nigeria on world class virgin deposits.

* To present the basic requirements to facilitate entrance into mining business in Nigeria.

Expansion of the sector, he noted, is being driven by the economic reforms being carried out by the administration of President Olusegun Obasanjo, and the Minister of Solid Minerals Development Prof. Leslye Obiora.

The legislatures too, he said, are also passing new laws to satisfy global best practices that will make the expansion transparent and attractive. Further, in recognition of the future role of this sector, the World Bank has agreed to the financing of a sustainable management of mineral resources project to the tune of 120 million dollars.

Meanwhile, IMICON is a private sector led initiative aimed at propelling the rapid development of the Nigerian mining industry. The mission and vision of the organisers is to have an annual mining event that focuses on the huge mineral resource endowment in Nigeria and the West African sub region and act as a catalyst for further exploration and exploitation of the mineral resources by local and foreign investors.

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