Federal government through the Mineral Sector Support for Economic Diversification (MinDiver) Project has engaged the services of a French Consulting firm SOFRECO to develop the artisanal and Small-Scale Mining (ASM) Sector by formalizing its miners into cooperatives and Small-Scale mining outfits.
The project is expected to strengthen administration of the ASM sub-sector which is an integral part of the Nigerian mining industry by conducting a comprehensive mapping of ASM sites and trading centres including existing initiatives (registered co-operatives) through the establishment of remote sensing monitoring system.
Speaking at the inception meeting with the consultants, Project Coordinator, Mineral Sector Support for Economic Diversification Project (MinDiver) Mr Linus Adie said the plan is to better organise ASMs for economic development in line with FG mandate of economic diversification through the solid minerals sector.
Adie added that, federal government obtained acquired credit from the International Development Association (IDA) to fund the MinDiver Project designed to improve the attractiveness of Nigerian Mining Sector, as a driver for economic diversification and to create a globally competitive sector capable of contributing to wealth creation, providing jobs and advancing social and human security.
Also present was Engr. Patrick Ojeka, Director, Artisanal and Small Scale Mining in the Ministry, who appreciated the gesture of the FG adding that it was an intervention long overdue as the ministry amongst other challenges is faced with Illegal mining caused by the activities of unregistered miners, and with this formalization, it will better increase revenue generation.
More so, it is expected that staff of the ASM department undergo trainings at specialized GIS institutions on the operations and application of GIS and remote sensing techniques as they apply to the use of the ASM monitoring platforms.
The contract, which is expected to kick-off in September 2019, will run for a duration of 12 months.