We don’t want our gemstones to be like unrefined exported oil – FG
The federal government has, for the umpteenth time, warned against exporting unrefined gemstones or solid minerals.
He warned it was a criminal offense for anyone indulging in it, saying the government was committed to protecting its gemstones and making fortunes from them.
The Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Mines and Steel Development, Dr. Oluwatoyin Akinlade, spoke in Lagos at the Gold and Gemstones Conference and Exhibition organized by the Section of Women in Mining (WiMin) report on “Unveiling Nigerian Gold and Gemstones to the World.”
According to Future Market Insights, the global gemstone market is currently worth $30.8 billion and is expected to reach $53.1 billion by 2032.
But Nigeria is reportedly losing $3 billion a year from the illegal trade in gemstones, prompting the federal government to shine a spotlight on illegal trades and devise a policy that will make the export of solid mineral deposits in their natural state without added value a criminal offence. .
It should be recalled that the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Mr. Olamilekan Adegbite, had said in Lagos that under the policy, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) will act as the buyer to buy refined gold produced by indigenous miners.
Reiterating this, the permanent secretary said the federal government was not ready to turn the solid minerals industry into another locally refined oil.
Akinlade listed the achievements of the ministry to include the establishment of mining clusters in each geopolitical zone of the country; formalizing the gemstone market in Ibadan, the capital of Oyo State and training Nigerians to have a skilled workforce in the sector.
“It is now an offense to take our precious stones or solid minerals out of the country without the necessary documents.
We don’t want our gemstones to become like refined petroleum outside the country,” Akinlade said.
Furthermore, the Permanent Secretary of the Lagos State Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources said that the establishment of the gemstone market in Ibadan was a step in the right direction, especially now that gold is l one of the strategic gemstones in Nigeria.
“The significance of this information is that it will boost the production of strategic solid minerals in Nigeria,” Shasore said.
Coordinator of WiMin in Lagos, Foluke Ademokun said the ultimate goal of the Lagos 2022 Gold and Gemstone Conference and Exhibition is to attract potential investors, banks and other financial institutions to the industry. mining, especially gold and precious stones.
She said: “The choice of Lagos is mainly due to the fact that Lagos is the economic center of Nigeria as well as its proximity to the gold and gemstone mines of Osun, Oyo and Ekiti States and the old gold jewelry markets in the heart of Lagos.