Determined to attract Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and develop the country’s minerals and metals sector, the federal government has granted over $250 million worth of import duty waiver to the Royal Salt Limited.
Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Musa Sada, who was represented by the Director, Mines Inspectorate department in the ministry, Engr. Dauda Awojobi, announced this during his inspection visit to the company in Abakaliki, Ebonyi State recently.
“According to the Nigerian Mining and Minerals Act of 2007, any equipment that is brought in for the purpose of mining starting with mining exploration, exploitation and processing will be brought into the country duty free.
“The government through the Federal Ministry of Finance has granted a total of Two Hundred and Fifty One Million, Forty Seven Thousand, Forty Nine Naira, Sixty Kobo (N251, 047,049.60k) as waiver on import duty on equipment to Royal Salt Limited”, he said.
Sada, according to a statement by the Deputy Director of Press in the ministry, Mr Ambrose Momoh, explained that the federal government was committed to providing incentives like waiver on import duty on mining equipment and expatriate quota system, among others to mining investors for the minerals and metals sector to thrive in the country.
He said the inspection visit to the Royal Salt Limited was necessary in order to get a first hand information on their mining operations and assess the level of progress of its project in line with its minimum work programme as stipulated by the law.
The minister expressed joy over the level of work done by the company which started with the exploration work to mining development, which would eventually lead to beneficiation, whereby value would be added to the minerals mined in line with the minimum work programme the company submitted to the ministry.
“We are pleased as a ministry because they submitted minimum work programme which has highlighted the various programmes they are going to embark on from exploration”, he said.
Sada said the company had recorded tremendous success with the establishment of a resource of 750,000 metric tonnes of ore which would enable them to commence mining operation in the country.
Earlier, the Director of the Royal Salt Limited, Obi Alio thanked the federal government for creating an enabling environment for their mining business to thrive in the country.? He described the mining project as a pilot project for the country in terms of mining development.
Alio said the project was also community based because of its value addition to the nation’s economy as well as its local content policy.? He disclosed that fifty percent of the job to be created would come from the host communities, adding that, the company was established to mine Lead, Zinc, Brine (salt) which would feed the company’s two processing plants in Lagos and Portharcourt for the production of edible salt.
General Manager of the company, Chandra Mantri explained that Royal Salt Limited is the current owner and operator of the mineral property number ML188 (mining lease) for the development of Lead, Zinc and salt.
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