SAINT PETERSBURG, RUSSIA – 2023/11/02: The national flag of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as a participating country at the 12th St. Petersburg International Gas Forum (SPIGF 2023). (Photo by Maksim Konstantinov/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

LAGOS, May 14 (Reuters) – The Nigerian government on Tuesday launched an information portal where investors can access details of its mineral resources, facilities and infrastructure, according to a statement from the ministry of mines.

“Before if you are a prospective foreign investor, you have to travel to Nigeria to access required information, but with this launch, anywhere you are in the world, with a click of a button, you can access all the information you require to make informed investment decisions,” said Dele Alake, Nigeria’s mining minister.

Africa’s top oil producer, which is also rich in gold, limestone and zinc, wants its mining industry to play a much bigger role in its effort to diversify the economy away from its reliance on oil.

The portal, called Nigeria Mineral Resources Decision Support System (NMDSS), can be accessed on the website of the same name, and contains publicly available data on geology and mineral wealth in Nigeria.

Nigeria is seeking to woo investors to a mining sector that has long been underdeveloped, contributing less than 1% to the country’s gross domestic product.

It has stepped up reforms in the sector including offering investors 75% in a new national mining company, cutting exports of unprocessed minerals, and enforcing compliance with rules against illegal mining.

Alake said illegal mining was being curbed by the recently unveiled mining marshals, while about 152 cooperatives had been formed by artisanal miners to legalise their operations, in line with reform efforts.


(Reporting by Isaac Anyaogu; Editing by Mark Potter)