The Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) says that about 16.3 million metric tons of solid minerals valued at $30 million was exported from Nigeria in 2017.
NEITI disclosed this in its latest report on independent reconciliation of company payments and government receipts audit in the solid mineral released in Abuja on Sunday.
It said that Nigeria’s total export was about ₦13.6 trillion with solid minerals contributing N77.23 billion or 0.57 per cent of total export in 2017”.
The report noted that a trend analysis showed that in 2015, solid minerals export was N1.94 billion.
This, it said, witnessed a geometric leap to N11.16 billion in 2016 and an equally impressive figure of N77.2 billion in 2017.
“This is an indication that the solid minerals sector is steadily contributing to the federation’s export earnings but requires greater government attention.
“The major destination of Nigeria’s export during the year under review is China.
“The country accounted for 68 per cent of the total export value during the year,’’ it said.
According to the report, other destinations are Malaysia, Vietnam and India.
The report, however, observed that export data received from the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) include minerals that were not captured in the production data provided by the MID as well as inconsistency in FOB value of minerals.
The report also contains comprehensive information and data on how many licenses were issued as well as gross revenues that accrued to the federation account from both oil and non-oil sources for the year 2017.
It asserted that while Nigeria’s gross revenues stood at ₦7.4 trillion, revenues specifically from the solid minerals sector represented only about 0.05 per cent.
The report explained that the absence of an industry-specific fiscal regime made it difficult to tie revenue flows from the solid minerals industry to the federation account.
It noted that the development also affected efforts at quantifying the contribution of the solid minerals sector to Nigeria’s GDP, which presently stands at current basic price of ₦113.7 trillion.
The report, however, highlighted that the sector’s contribution to GDP was an abysmal 0.11 per cent which showed a decline of 0.01 per cent and 0.02 per cent from the data of 0.12 per cent in 2015, and 0.13 per cent in 2016.
It further explained that out of 1,072 entities covered by the exercise, only transactions by 59 companies were reconciled.
“These 59 companies accounted for over 86 per cent of the total royalty payments made by the sector in 2017.
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 December 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.
Amedu Onekpe & Co, an indigenous accounting and auditing firm, conducted the 2017 solid minerals audit for NEITI.(NAN)