FG set up committee on exploitation and exploration of bitumen resources

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….untapped bitumen reserve now 42.74 billion tons

THE federal government has estimated bitumen reserve that has remained untapped for years in the country at 42.74 billion metric tons. It says that the reserve is located along the states of Ogun, Ondo, Delta, Rivers and Bayelsa.

Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Olamilekan Adegbite, said that bitumen is an important component mineral resource needed for road construction that is in abundance and can be explored and exploited for economic development.

Adegbite stated this in Abuja, while setting up a committee to work out modalities on the exploitation and exploration of bitumen resources in the country as part of the administration’s efforts to diversify the economy.

Theodore Agbagwa made this known in a statement on behalf of the Director Press for the ministry.

He stated, “The federal government has set up a committee to work out modalities on the exploitation and exploration of bitumen resources in the country as part of the administration’s efforts to diversify the economy.

“The Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Arc. Olamilekan Adegbite, who inaugurated the 9-man committee on the development of bitumen resources, in his office, said bitumen is an important component mineral resource needed for road construction that is in abundance, which the country can explore and exploit for economic development.

Adegbite disclosed that Nigeria has an estimated reserve of about 42.74 billion metric tons of bitumen along the states of Ogun, Ondo, Delta, Rivers and Bayelsa, which remained majorly untapped for years.

“Membership of the committee, chaired by the Director General, Mining Cadastre Office, Simon Nkom, was drawn from staff of relevant departments in the ministry and Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE).

The committee, which has two weeks to submit its report has the following terms of reference: Collate and study previous reports on development of Bitumen in Nigeria; identify current title holders and the level of exploration or exploitation; determine available bitumen reserves and recommend criteria for allocation of available reserves and ways of developing the resource to ensure maximum benefits for the country.

“Adegbite enumerated some of the benefits Nigeria would derive from the exploration of the bitumen deposits in Nigeria which includes the diversification of the economy, improvement in technological growth, establishment of international contracts vital for international cooperation in the new expanding technology and socio-economic impact on the areas of operation amongst others.” Responding on behalf of the committee, Nkom assured the minister that the committee members would work assiduously to justify the confidence reposed in them.


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