The Government of Western Australia will support Nigerian mining professionals in the quest for studies in modern mining technology and practices that will enhance professionalism and service delivery in Nigeria, a statement from the Ministry of Solid Minerals Development has said.
The statement, which was signed by Head, Press and Public Relations in the Ministry, Alaba Balogun, said the Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Mr. Alake brokered the deal a courtesy visit to Bill Johnston, Minister for Mines and Petroleum, Energy, Corrective Services and Industrial Relations of the government of Western Australia.
This was as the Minister led the Nigerian delegation to the 21st Africa Down Under Mining Conference held in Perth, Australia.
According to Balogun, ‘Alake proposed a programme enabling Nigerian mining professionals to study modern mining technology and practices in Western Australia with the government’s support,’ adding that the minister acknowledged the progress achieved by the Australian government in mineral development.
Alake said Australia had acquired a lot of knowledge and skills in developing its modern mining industry, adding that Nigerians will benefit from training, study trips and exchange of mineral professionals in its current effort to transform the sector.
He said the government of Nigeria had launched a roadmap to attract foreign direct investment by investing in big data on minerals and the quantum of their deposits, forming a solid minerals corporation and joint venture agreements with multinationals in mining to enable the sector to compete globally.
He informed the Australian minister that Nigeria has vast deposits of precious minerals, including lithium, gold, coal, lead, zinc, baryte and iron ore among others.
Responding, Johnston appreciated the courtesy visit of the Minister of Solid Minerals and his delegation. He remarked that the meeting would pave the way for cordial relations.
Accepting the proposal, Mr. Johnston said the government of Western Australia would support the transfer of knowledge and skills to mining professionals from Nigeria and sponsor mining experts to visit Nigeria to impart knowledge.
He urged the minister to make a formal request as soon as possible so that both could work together to realise the goal.
He promised to mobilise the public and private sectors to support the initiative, as many companies are willing to explore opportunities for developing the mining sector in Africa.
Among the members of the delegation are the Nigerian High Commissioner to Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific, Ambassador Anderson Madubike; Deputy High Commissioner, Mrs. Mercy Clement; Mr. Martins Imonitie, Investment Banker from ANZ Bank; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Solid Minerals, Dr.Mary Ogbe; Special Adviser to the Minister, Kehinde Bamigbetan; Director General, Mining Cadastral Office, Engr. Obadiah Simon Nkom and the Technical Assistant to the Minister, Mrs.Chinemerem Nwaka.