Trade & Investment

Solid Minerals

The commercial value of Nigeria’s solid minerals has been estimated to run into hundreds of trillions of dollars. It has also been estimated that Nigeria loses about $40 billion annually in unexploited gold alone. The domestic mining industry is underdeveloped, currently accounting for only 0.5 percent of Nigeria’s GDP. With the global decline in oil prices, Nigeria is seeking to diversify its economy by building a stronger revenue base that would require a stronger performance of the solid minerals sector. Solid Minerals in Nigeria deposits are scattered all over the country. They include: lead-zinc ores, tin, niobium, lead, gypsum, limestone, manganese, magnesite, coal, wolframite, silver, diatomite, limonite, rutile, kyanite, clay, columbite, mica, barite, pyrite, galena, sodium chloride, sphalerite, silica sand, granites, tantalite, sphalerite, talc, quartz, marble, heliodor, gemstone (tourmaline, aquamarine and sapphire), chalcopyrite, topaz, tantalite, emerald, amethyst, coking coal, iron ore, kaolin, calcite, copper ore, beryl, gold, garnet, and bismuth. These minerals are obtained all over the country, but Nasarawa State in the North has been described as Nigeria’s home of solid minerals as it is endowed with a larger number of solid mineral deposits.
Investment opportunities include, in mineral prospecting and mining. As part of the strategies to reform the sector, the Ministry of Solid Minerals Development (MSMD) has identified seven strategic minerals, namely: Coal, Bitumen, Limestone, Iron Ore, Barites, Gold and Lead/Zinc for priority development. Coal: Nigerian coal has been found suitable for boiler fuel, production of high caloric gas, domestic heating, briquettes, formed coke and the manufacture of a wide range of chemicals, including waxes, resins, adhesives, and dyes. Coal can be found in the central, middle-east, and south-east regions of the country (Anambra, Kogi, Plateau, Benue, and Enugu States). A reasonable estimate in these regions is put at a total of 396 million metric tons, while the unproven reserves are estimated to be in the region of 1,134 million metric tons.
Similarly, there are a great number of investment opportunities in the processing of solid minerals in Nigeria. The lack of processing facilities in Nigeria is a situation that can be leveraged on by investors. Equipment Sales and Rental as the mining industry in Nigeria is a growth industry, there is going to be an increased demand for the requisite equipment. There are currently very few players in this space, and this presents an opportunity to investors. With regard to Mineral Ore Sales, there is a ready local and international market for mineral ores. The international market is mostly controlled by China, and can yield high profits for an investor.
Consultancy also presents opportunity in the solid mineral sector. There are opportunities for professionals with acquired expertise in the mining industry. Services like geological survey, preparation of feasibility study, securing mining sites and license, equipment procurement, seethe curing export contract, among others, can be rendered in the industry. There are also opportunities for business consulting and advisory.

For more information, please visit