Barrick Gold and Rio Tinto Seek to invest in Nigeria’s Mining Industry

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Globally recognised mining companies, Barrick Gold Corp. and Rio Tinto Group have expressed interest in Nigeria’s largely untapped mining sector.

This was recently disclosed by Nigeria’s Minister for Mines and Steels Development, Arc Olamilekan Adegbite, at a mining conference in  Saudi Arabia’s capital, Riyadh.

According to Adegbite, Nigeria is hoping investors will follow the example of Thor Explorations Ltd., which has built the country’s first industrial gold project, as it seeks to cut its dependence on oil earnings.

“They are looking at the possibility of coming to look at opportunities in Nigeria,”

Vancouver-based Thor poured first gold from its mine in southwestern Nigeria in July and is targeting output of 85,000 ounces a year.

“We’re so happy and delighted because they have succeeded and so give the right signal for investors,” Adegbite said.

Toronto-based Barrick, the world’s second biggest gold miner, is among the firms “interested in coming to Nigeria,” while the government “has spoken with” London-based Rio, the top iron ore producer, about opportunities in the country, the minister said.

Adegbite further made bare the government’s intention to auction rights to mine gold, lithium, copper and limestone later in the year.

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