Sunday, October 27, 2019 6:49 pm
A report by the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), has shown that Nigeria recorded a decline in solid minerals revenue between 2016 and 2017.
This was revealed in the 2017 solid minerals audit conducted for NEITI by an indigenous accounting and auditing firm, Amedu Onekpe & Co, for NEITI.
According to the report, “royalties paid by 59 companies in 2017 was N1.3 billion as against the N1.4 billion paid by 56 companies in 2016, resulting in a decrease of about 7.7 per cent in revenue.
This, it said, might be an indication of lower investment in mining activities in 2017.
On payouts to the federating units from solid minerals revenue, it stated that the last distribution of solid minerals accumulated royalties occurred in July 2016, when the sum of ₦9.92 billion was distributed by FAAC.
“The accumulated balance in the account as at Dec. 31, 2017, was ₦8.54 billion.
“As of April 30, 2019, the accumulated balance in the account increased by 66.4 per cent to ₦14.21 billion,” it explained.
However, the report noted the significant reforms and development in the sector which include increased funding from N1 billion in 2015 to N7 billion in 2017;
“Approval of ₦30 billion ($100 million) as intervention fund to facilitate exploration projects towards the much-needed geosciences data and other regulatory framework;
“N5 billion support fund launched by the Bank of Industry for small-scale miners at 5 per cent interest rate; 150 million dollar loan secured from the World Bank for the Mineral Sector Support for Economic Diversification Project (MinDiver) which became operational in 2017, among others,’’ it added.