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10 Major Untapped Resources In Nigeria. by saninng (m): 10:14pm on August 29
Sani Ibrahim
Abubakar Tafawa Balewa,University
Agricultural economics and extension
100Level, Nigeria.
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the time for the nation to diversify her economy by tapping different resources scattered across 36 States and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) is no other than now as the crude oil revenue which accounts for her major cash cow has depleted in the global market.

President Muhammadu Buhari had promised to implement policies on economic diversification as a result of the drop in global oil prices.

Governments, particularly the states, have been overdependent on the Federal Government for allocations to handle all projects without looking inwards for abundant natural resources to be tapped in their respective states.

Economic Confidential discovered that some farmers have sold their lands and moved to cities saying that agriculture can no longer put food on their tables.

It has been reported that the country loses about N50 trillion annually from her untapped resources. From untapped gold alone, an estimate of N8 trillion was discovered to have been lost annually in Nigeria. They are from royalties, taxes, charges and other fees thatthe government at all tiers of government would have earned from firms and individuals operating in solid mineral industry.

It seems the prospect is bright going by the determination and assurance by the current Minister of Solid Minerals Dr Kayode Fayemi I when he disclosed recently that: “FG is set to hand over the Ajaokuta Steel complex in Kogi State to private investors this year as part of a plan to revive the nation’s industrial and mining sectors.”

Yet, many states cannot afford N18, 000 minimum wage for workers despite the over 56 untapped natural resources available in different states capable of inviting foreign investor to the country.

For instance, Plateau State has about 22 various mineral deposits, and Nasarawa, 21; Kaduna, 19; Sokoto, 12; Ondo, 12; Bauchi, 11; Edo, 11; Oyo, 11; Benue, 10; Kogi, 9; Anambra, 9; Kwara, 8; Borno, 8; Delta, 8; Bayelsa, 8; Cross River, 8; Imo, 8; Kano, 7; Akwa Ibom, 7; Abuja, 7; Ogun, 7; Abia, 6; Rivers, 6; Osun, 6; Ekiti, 5; Adamawa, 4; Ebonyi, 3;Enugu, 3; Katsina, 3; Lagos, 3; Niger, 3; Gombe, 2; Yobe, 2; Zamfara, 2 with Jagawa, Kebbi, and Taraba states that has one.

Many developed nations such as Singapore, China and United Arab Emirate have no oil and abundant natural resources like Nigeria and yet they are among the largest economies in the world. They depend on agriculture, tourism and Information Technology for survival. Even our neighbouring countries such as Niger, Togo and Benin without oil revenue are surviving with striving businesses.

Here the Economic Confidential provides locations of major untapped natural resources essential for economic diversification in Nigeria:

Gold

Gold is a solid mineral that its exploration and proper finance by government would help to revive economy. Gold mining operation is carried out on a small-scale in Nigeria. It is found in Kwara, Bauchi, Ebonyi, Edo, Kaduna, Kebbi, Niger, Zamfara and the FCT.

Coal

Coal (lignite, sub-bituminous coal and bituminous coal) is one of the greatest resources found in Nigeria and the oldest commercial fuel which the nation has failed to explore. The discovery of oil and gas has led to the use of diesel, and natural gas and hydro resources for electricity generation. Economic Confidential learnt that untapped lignite deposit locations with over 50 million tonnes include Oriu in the South-east, Urnuezeala, Umuahia, Nnewi, Oba, in a 20 to 40km – wide belt across the Niger, to Ogwashi, Asaba, Mgbiigliba and Adiase-Uti in Delta State. It is also found in large quantities in Benue State

Columbite

Columbite, being a black mineral group, an ore of niobium, has a sub-metallic luster and a high density, a niobate of iron and manganese. It is used as an alloy of steel to form welder-able high speed steel for radio transmitting valves and heat sensitive detectivedevices. Analysts place the return on Investment (ROI) on columbite ore at 10-15%. It is mostly found in Plateau, Kano, Kaduna, Bauchi, Kogi and Nassarawa states.

Limestone

Limestone is formed through direct crystallisation from seawater and accumulation of shell fragments. The average specific gravity of Nigerian limestone varies from 2.70 to 2.86 and a possible market for the Nigerian government to explore because of its usefulness forindustries. Limestone is found in large quantities in Borno, Sokoto, Cross River and Benue states.

Tin

The ability of the government to explore tin ore would amount to economic development and generate employment for Nigerians. The production of tin ore is used in paint, paper and ink industries, tin oxide resistors and electric lead wires. It is found mostly in Jos,Plateau State, with about 10,546 tonnes.

Iron ore

Iron ore deposits found in Nigeria are revealed to be the purest deposits particularly those around Itakpe in Kogi State. The Ajaokuta Steel Company (ASCL) in Ajaokuta, and Delta Steel Company (DCL) in Aladja can be revamped to explore, exploit and produce iron and steels in Nigeria. Iron ore are also discovered in Anambra, Bauchi, Benue, Delta, Edo, Kwara, Nasarawa and Plateau states.

Uranium

The Nigeria Uranium Mining Company (NUMCO) after it was dissolved in 1996; government has failed to explore the resources and that has negative effect on the economy. Uranium deposits are available in locations such as Cross River, Adamawa, Taraba, Plateau, Bauch and Kano states.

Marble

Marble is other natural resource that has the capacity to create employment for millions of Nigerians. It is common in Nigeria and mostly used for sculpture and building. It is found in the FCT, Delta, Kogi, Kwara, Oyo, Plateau, and Rivers states.

Bitumen

In Nigeria, bitumen was first discovered in 1900 and explored in 1905. Bitumen deposits are found in Lagos, Ogun, Ondo and Edo states. A technical and economic evaluation of the deposit by Conoco revealed that there are over 13 billion barrels of oil in these tar sands and bitumen across the nation.

Koalin

Finally, Kaolin is an aspect of the industrial minerals available in commercial quantity in Nigeria. There are estimate of about 2 billion metric tonnes of kaolin deposits found in different parts of the nation particularly Edo, Ogun, Nasarawa and Plateau states.

#saninng
10 Major Untapped Resources In Nigeria - General Discussion

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