The Senate, through its committee on Finance, has said that Nigeria could generate about $3 billion from solid minerals.
The Chairman of the Finance Committee, Senator Sani Musa, said in a statement on Sunday that the informal sector, particularly the mining industry, is a hidden gem in the nation’s revenue potential.
He also stated that the Senate Finance Committee will seriously look at the informal sector, which constitutes about 80 percent of the Nigerian economy. The committee will look into empowering the informal sector, with a spotlight on mining.
He said, “This was corroborated by the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development that the solid minerals have the capacity to generate about 2–3 billion US dollars annually.
“We will dedicate our efforts to understanding and nurturing this sector with appropriate legislation, with an emphasis on formalizing artisanal and medium-scale mining activities.”
Musa noted that this strategic move will bring economic benefits while promoting safer and more responsible practices.
He added, “We will harness and raise revenue sources from both the Blue Marine and the Creative economies by setting targets.
“The committee will legislate to encourage regulations of consumption and production, facilitate an enabling environment through legislation for domestic industries to develop, and stimulate economic growth through direct foreign investment inflow.
“Upholding fiscal discipline is pivotal to our financial health. As the Senate Finance Committee, we will fasten our commitment to prudent revenue sourcing, ensuring that every income earned is being accounted for so that our nation’s priorities and development goals can be addressed.”
He also noted that the committee will ensure that the annual budget aligns with the Medium-Term Expenditure Framework and fiscal strategy paper to ensure a coherent roadmap, bridge medium-term aspirations with concrete fiscal plans, and foster accountability in the efficient utilization of resources.
The Senate Finance Committee also said it would extend unwavering support to the Presidential Committee on Fiscal Policy and Tax Reforms in its ambitious endeavor to address the substantial annual revenue gap of N20 trillion from non-oil sources and also to achieve an 18 percent tax-to-GDP ratio.
The lawmaker added, “In parallel, the committee underscores its commitment to legislate on comprehensive tax reforms, a pivotal step towards augmenting revenue generation and fostering sustainable economic growth.
“Strong oversight of revenue agencies will be entrenched as our responsibility extends to overseeing the activities of revenue-generating agencies. Through rigorous oversight, we will ensure their transparency, accountability, and efficiency, thus maximizing revenue collection for national development.”