The Federal Government of Nigeria says it will stop the importation of steel materials into the county to encourage local investors in the sector.
The Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Mr Olamilekan Adegbite, made this known during a familiarisation visit to Kam Industries Limited, a privately owned steel industry in Ilorin, Kwara state.
Adegbite added that the government would stop the importation of steel materials into the country once it attained self sufficiency in steel production.
“My ultimate aim is that we ban steel importation into the country totally.
“But then, before we do that, we must be able to satisfy local consumption from local production and have some excess for export; that is where we are heading,” the Minister explained.
He said it was necessary for local private investors to invest in the country’s steel sector rather than foreigners, to avoid capital flight.
The Minister expressed satisfaction over the level of production in the industry, saying that it was something that should be emulated by well meaning Nigerians.
“It is impressive, I have been to see our own steel plant at Ajaokuta, though it may not be working now, but I have been shown the processes.
“Coming here, I can see a functional one, of course with a similar process; this is very commendable.
“For a private entrepreneur to do this, providing employment for more than 4,000 people, it is very impressive and it is worth my coming here today.
“Our dreams and hopes for the Nigeria steel industry was built on Ajaokuta, and it has become something very emotional to the whole country,” Adegbite added.