Business is booming.

Nasarawa attracts new Chinese investors in $200m lithium processing plant

By Our Reporter

A reknowned Chinese firm, Canmax Technologies, has announced readiness to invest $200 million in establishment of another lithium processing plant in Nasarawa State.

The new investment was announced at weekend in Abuja following President Bola Tinubu’s commendation on Avatar, the Chinese firm that built Nigeria’s largest lithium processing plant in Lafia, Nasarawa State.

Leadership of both Chinese firms, Mr. Hi Yongwei, Chairman of Avatar New Energy Materials Company whose company built lithium processing plant that can produce 4,000 lithium metric tons on daily basis, and Mr. Zhenhua Pet, Chairman Canmax Technologies whose company is ready to invest $200m in construction of another lithium processing plant, were hosted by President Bola Tinubu at the State House, Abuja.

President Tinubu welcomed the inauguration of the 4,000 capacity lithium processing plant and the announcement of the new investment.

He urged the Chinese firms to prioritize environmental protection, community engagement, and corporate social responsibility initiatives as integral part of their operations.

”You must not leave the community in ruins as you explore for our high-grade minerals. You must be concerned with cooperation and always care for the community. You can always promote the interest of China and Nigeria as the best place in Africa to do business. We are preparing to produce in this country the solar technologies that the entire continent will use,” the President said.

President Tinubu also applauded Governor Sule of Nasarawa State and the Minister for Solid Minerals Development, Mr. Dele Alake, for their dedication to ensuring the environment protection and value addition by mining firms operating in the country.

In his remarks during the visit to the State House, Governor Sule thanked the president for his unflinching support towards solid minerals development in the country.

He said the lithium processing plant that was commissioned on Friday in Nasarawa is a $500 million turnover company. ”They (the Chinese investors) are happy, and they have seen enough potential to mine lithium in the state for the next 15 to 20 years,” Governor Sule noted.

In his own remarks, the Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Mr. Dele Alake, said the ministry has embarked on proactive measures to address the risk posed by abandoned mines across the country, left behind by colonialists in the 1950’s and 1960’s.

According to Alake, the ministry is in the process of putting in place remedial measures and convert some of the abandoned mining sites into constructive uses such as farming and irrigation.

” To ensure that companies operating in this sector no longer abandon the mines after they have finished operations, it is part of our requirement that for licencing fresh applicants, there must be concrete remediation plans that are viable and working before any application is approved for mining,” the minister said.

In separate remarks, the Chinese executives described their investment in Nigeria as worth while and pledged to adhere to mining regulations in the country while fulfilling their corporate social responsibilities to their host communities.


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