Licensed refineries in Nigeria are set to develop gold refining capacity in the country and improve the value of the resource through taking it to bullion standard. According to the Minister of Mines and Steels Development, Mr. Olamilekan Adegbite, mostly, gold that is used to make jewelry is from the door bars. “Door bars are about 93% pure, but when you want to take gold as a measure of wealth as is recognized intentionally, you have to refine it to bullion standard which makes it 99.99% pure,” he said.
“You would recall that sometimes in August last year, we presented gold in bullion standard to President Buhari. That was a proof of concept to show that we have gold in Nigeria and we could take it to the bullion level. The bullion is what the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) or even an individual can keep. If you have bullion now, you can know the value from the price quoted on the New York Exchange, price of gold is quoted daily. The one we presented to the president was worth about N168 million for 12.5kg. Within a few months, prices of gold went up and it became about N250 million because price of gold kept moving per ounce,” said the minister.
Gold Refineries in Nigeria
“We gave it to the president and the CBN purchased it. Putting that bullion in the vault of CBN increased our foreign exchange reserve. So that is another thing we are trying to do. The final leg of taking it to bullion standard was done outside the country in Turkey. Now, we have licensed two institutions. The third one was just recently licensed so that one is just starting. But the first two that were licensed earlier to build refineries in Nigeria have gone far; one is in Abuja, and another one is in Mowe, Ogun State. These institutions will be able to refine gold to bullion standard locally and of course, individuals can buy gold,” affirmed Mr. Adegbite.