• Wed. Jun 12th, 2024

Nasarawa State Teams Up With NASENI To Collaborate On Lithium Processing Strategy

ByHybrid News

Aug 22, 2023

L-R: Dr. Bashir Gwandu, Executive Vice Chairman/CEO, National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI) and Governor Engr. Abdullahi A. Sule, when the Governor paid a courtesy visit to the NASENI Headquarters on Friday 18th August, 2023.

The Nasarawa State government and the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI) have entered into a collaborative effort aimed at implementing a policy for processing lithium within the state. This policy seeks to ensure that the lithium extracted from Nasarawa State is processed domestically, rather than being exported in its raw form.

The initiative aligns with NASENI’s strategic focus on promoting the processing of critical solid minerals, particularly aiming to facilitate local production of batteries for electric vehicles and energy storage applications.
The announcement was made during a courtesy visit by the Executive Governor of Nasarawa State, Engr. Abdullahi A. Sule, to Dr. Bashir Gwandu, the Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of NASENI, at the agency’s headquarters in Abuja over the weekend. Notably, Nasarawa State possesses substantial lithium deposits, potentially making it one of the leading lithium reserves in Nigeria.

NASENI has garnered attention recently for its efforts to attract international investors and Nigerian lithium buyers to collaborate on the local processing of various forms of lithium into battery products. These collaborative efforts encompass the entire spectrum of lithium processing, from mining and extraction to the production of final battery products for both domestic use and export.

Responding to the call, Chinese companies have already begun engaging with NASENI, expressing interest in partnering for this endeavor. Dr. Gwandu revealed that NASENI will work in conjunction with other governmental bodies such as the Rural Electricity Agency (REA), the Nigerian Geological Survey Agency (NGSA), and other investment institutions to further this initiative.

L-R: Dr. Mrs. Olayinka Komolafe, Secretary to the Agency, NASENI; Dr. Bashir Gwandu, Executive Vice Chairman/CEO, National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI); Engr. Abdullahi A. Sule, Executive Governor of Nasarawa State and Mrs. Nonyem Onyechi, Coordinating Director, Planning and Business Development, NASENI when the governor paid a working visit to the Agency’s headquarters, Abuja on Friday 18th August, 2023.

Governor Sule expressed his enthusiasm for partnering with NASENI, stating that numerous companies have indicated their intention to invest in Nasarawa State for lithium processing, with projected daily processing capacities ranging from 1,000 to 3,000 tonnes.

The governor highlighted the need for coordinated efforts and collaboration, indicating that other states such as Kebbi and Kwara could also attract similar companies and investments. He stressed the importance of positioning Nigeria as a significant global lithium producer.

Governor Sule drew parallels between the ongoing developments and a “Lithium Rush,” as global lithium prices have surged from $6,000 to $78,000 per metric ton. He emphasized Nasarawa State’s abundant lithium resources and emphasized the importance of fruitful collaboration with NASENI for exploration, extraction, and processing.

Governor Sule proposed utilizing the NASENI Solar facility in Gora for lithium processing and battery production, given its proximity to raw materials and the NASENI Solid Minerals Institute, both located within Nasarawa State. He pledged his support for the agency and called for increased collaboration, culminating in an economic summit dubbed the “Lithium Rush Summit.”

L-R: Dr. Bashir Gwandu, Executive Vice Chairman/CEO, National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI) and Governor Engr. Abdullahi A. Sule, when the Governor paid a courtesy visit to the NASENI Headquarters on Friday 18th August, 2023.

Dr. Gwandu echoed the governor’s sentiments, underscoring NASENI’s dedication to adding value to Nasarawa State’s economy. He informed the governor of NASENI’s plans to establish an MRO/ARO (Maintenance, Repair, and Overhaul / Aircraft Remanufacturing Operation) to bolster aerospace industry capacity in Abuja. He sought the governor’s advocacy within the Nigerian Governors’ Forum (NGF) to facilitate the release of NASENI’s allocated funds, which are pivotal for the agency’s operations in science, technology, and innovation (STI) for industrial development at the state level.

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