The Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Olamilekan Adegbite, has urged investors to establish gold plants in the country to promote domestic gold production.
Adegbite made the call during an inspection tour of the gold smelting plant in Mopq-Muro, Kogi State, according to a statement by the ministry on Friday.
“The Federal Government has called on investors and would-be investors to replicate the construction of Gold Smelting Plant sited in Mopa, Mopa Muro Local Government Area of Kogi State,” the statement said.
According to the minister, the smelting plant is a pilot project located in Mopa Muro Local Government due to gold deposits in the vicinity and will provide services to catchment areas within its location.
“This processing plant project here in Mopa Muro Local Government Area of Kogi State is for the North Central and it is because we found gold in this neighbourhood,” he said.
The minister also urged the artisanal and small-scale miners in the area to take advantage of the gold smelting plant by taking their gold to the facility for proper processing.
According to him, the gold smelting plant is the government’s demonstration of a safer method of gold smelting that is environmentally friendly as it complies with global standards.
“Our gold will be processed here, we want to utilise our own gold locally for the benefit of Nigeria so that we do not export jobs and at the end of the day, the value stays here, the job stays here and the money stays here,” Adegbite added.