Friday, October 4,2019
Nigeria Mining Week to gather 1200+ mining experts in Abuja
“The main message I’d like to share with the delegates at Nigeria Mining Week is that Nigeria is open for business and is ready to make the most of its mineral wealth” says Mr Begna Gebreyes, Senior Vice President: Investments, at the Africa Finance Corporation (AFC). “Less than 0.5% of the country’s GDP comes from minerals and mining. However, the country has much to offer such as coal, gold, iron ore, uranium, wolframite, columbite, tantalite and bitumen. Diversifying away from oil, which is unpredictable in pricing, is key to ensuring the country’s stability as is maximising our mineral wealth instead of importing from abroad.”
He continues: “however, it goes without saying that this will not be done at any cost. Delegates must understand that Nigeria’s mineral wealth must be exploited in a way that is inclusive and sustainable, and more thought must be given to in-country beneficiation so that Nigerians are not only producing natural resources but also manufacturing finished products.”
At the upcoming Nigeria Mining Week in Abuja from 14-16 October, Mr Gebreyes is part of a panel discussion on “Understanding the needs of financial institutions and funding organizations-the financial models available to support mining projects”.
Our goal is to grow investments in mining
In an exclusive pre-event interview, Mr Gebreyes says “there is a tremendous amount of opportunity in the mining sector all across Africa. Our goal is to grow our investments in mining, over the next few years, to over US$500 million. There are many exciting projects that merit investment.” According to the AFC SVP, one example of such an exciting project is the Segilola Gold Project in Nigeria with Thor Explorations.
He explains: “we have offered the company a US$78-million financing package for its Segilola Gold Project. This funding solution includes a credit facility, a gold stream and common equity. Nigeria is known around the world as a major oil producer but much less so for its mineral resources. We are very proud to be supporting the growth of Nigeria’s fledgling mining industry.”