The development of Nigeria’s steel sector will help speed up the country’s industrialisation process, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has said.
The vice president said despite having the 12th largest iron ore deposit in the world and the second largest in Africa, about 70 per cent of Nigeria’s deposits were yet to be proven.
He said in Ilorin, Kwara State, on Tuesday that the federal government was looking at options to solve the challenge of developing the sector, including mobilising government capacity and private sector competencies to certify existing deposits.
“Because steel is the world most important engineering material, Buhari’s presidency is determined to bring about a faster industrialization process in the country through the active development of the steel sector,” he said.
With about 2 billion metric tonnes of iron ore reserves, he said Nigeria must be extremely ambitious in her industrialization efforts, adding that never has the need to increase investment in Nigeria been more crucial than time.
Mr. Osinbajo who was speaking at the foundation laying ceremony of Kam Steel Integrated Complex at Jimba Oja, said steel plays an important role in the present administration’s economic agenda.
To demonstrate the administration’s commitment to make the country a net exporter of steel, he said President Muhammadu Buhari had directed that everything be done to ensure that Nigeria progressed in the ease of doing business ranking this year.
Mr. Osinbajo said the federal government was working on the right macro-economic policies to attract investors.
“Diligent efforts are being made to realise the clear instructions by the president that we must make significant progress in the ease of doing business ranking this year. We have set up an inter-ministerial committee with a presidential oversight to pursue that mandate,” he said.
Earlier, Minister of Solid Minerals, Kayode Fayemi, observed that the achievement of Kam Steel Company was capable of galvanizing the development of the sector, describing it as the single-largest private investment in the steel industry in Nigeria.
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