Pursuant to the economic diversification drive of the federal government, the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development (MMSD) is organising the second Metallurgical Industry Stakeholders Forum (MISF) for metal sector operators in the country.
According to a statement from the ministry, the forum which is holding in Asaba, the Delta State capital, Tuesday through Wednesday is primarily targeted at availing metal operators in the South-South geopolitical zone and others the opportunity to interface and join hands with the federal government to explore possible ways of solving the existing challenges faced by operators in the metal sector.
The statement further revealed that in the course of the parley, the government hopes to create the required linkages for the rapid development of the metal sector by assisting private metal sector operators to synergise.
The 2nd MISF themed, ‘Development of the Nigerian Metal Sector: A Panacea for National Development and Imperative for Economic Diversification’’, whose Chief Host is the Minister of State for the ministry, Abubakar Bawa Bwari, is expected to facilitate an interface between government and all stakeholders including the Metallurgical Operators Association of Nigeria (MOAN) which was inaugurated at the first edition of the forum in Abuja, with a view to revamping the long abandoned but industrially critical metal sector in the overall interest national economic prosperity.
With the discovery so many years ago of several local raw materials such as the Itakpe iron ore, Osara dolomite, Lafia/Obi coking coal that is blendable, Ubor mable, Limestone at Ikot-Abasi, Natural Gas, etc, the federal government established the following, most of which have either been privatised or are moribund: the two Integrated Steel Companies at Ajaokuta and Aladja (ASCL and DSCL); the raw material sourcing Agencies at Kaduna (NSMREA), Jos (NMDC) and Itakpe (NIOMCO); the Aluminium Smelter Company of Nigeria (ALSCON); the Metallurgical Training Institute (MTI) at Onitsha; and the Three Inland Rolling Companies at Jos (JSRC), Katsina (KSRC) and Oshogbo (OSRC).