The Director-General, Nigerian Geological Survey Agency, Dr Abdulrazaq Garba, has said that high-grade lithium discovered in Nigeria has been attracting foreign investors.
He said this while briefing journalists on mineral exploration activities in Abuja.
Lithium is a highly reactive metal that is used for making energy-dense rechargeable batteries for electronics, such as laptops, cell phones, electric vehicles, and grid storage.
Garba said, “Nigeria lithium is hot cake now, the mineral was discovered in several parts of the country in the course of the National Integrated Mineral Exploration Project during exploration and we did investigation and came up with analysis and discovered that Nigeria lithium is of high grade.
He added, “High grade in the sense that the standard worldwide for even exploration and mining starts from 0.4 per cent lithium oxide but when we started exploration and mining, we saw one per cent up to 13 per cent lithium oxide content.
“Another advantage of Nigerian lithium is that it is hard rock lithium and that is what investors are looking out for worldwide. We even had discussions with some private companies with mining licences in Nigeria and they conducted tests on the lithium and we also collaborated with Canada on that too.”
He said that a track of mineralisation almost two to 10km was discovered close to Abuja, adding that resource evaluation was conducted on the area and anomolous gold, lead and silver were discovered with Tungsten, an addictive for steel production.
“Gold mineralisation found there has a high content of tungsten which is used as an additive in the production of steel, therefore, any company mining there will be mining gold associated with lead, silver and tungsten.”
Speaking on some internal activities of the agency, he said the agency under his watch had been able to increase the number of maps.
“We have been able to produce a map album. The map album that we use was produced about 10 years ago, but we now have a new one in place. Now what this map album does is that it provides generic information on geology and mineral resources of the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory. On geology and mineral resources consumer bases, we have six zones in Nigeria; we have been able to produce that,” Garba said.
He further disclosed that insecurity in the country was affecting some of the agency’s activities as some of their staff were attacked or kidnapped.
Garba also said that many companies and investors are interested in the data set generated by the agency.