- Nigeria’s First Gold Refinery to be Completed June 2019
A Nigerian firm, Kian Smith Trade & Co Limited, on Thursday, broke ground on the nation’s first gold refinery, saying the project would be completed by the end of the first half of next year.
It said the refinery would start with a production capacity of three tonnes per month of 99.99 per cent gold and one ton per month production of 99.99 per cent silver.
The Minister of State for Mines and Steel Development, Abubakar Bwari, who was quoted in a statement as saying at the ground-breaking ceremony, stated, “The present administration is determined to develop the mining sector to act as a catalyst for sustainable economic growth of the country.
“Part of our marching orders in the mines and steal development ministry is that we are expected to develop the sector to increase its contribution to the nation’s Gross Domestic Product, improve its capacity to create jobs and engender sustainable mining.”
He noted that it was in keeping with his ministry’s mandate that a road map was developed for the growth and development of the mining sector.
“During the focus labs of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan of this administration, we discovered that a well-organised gold value chain can trigger an economic revolution as it did in India, South Africa, Switzerland and others,” Bwari said.
He added that the ministry had continued to work in this light to develop a gold value chain for the country.
“We will be supplying the Central Bank of Nigeria, the jewellery and the electronics industry.”
We have already secured a significant monthly supply of gold from Zamfara, Kebbi, Kwara, Niger, Kaduna, Ibadan, Ile-Ife, and Ilesha and about 100kg per month from other parts of Africa,” said the Vice Chairman, Kian Smith, Nere Teriba.
She said the firm was finalising supply agreements and terms from suppliers in Kano, adding, “Next week, we will be securing supply from Kogi State.”
According to Teriba, the refinery, when completed, will provide more than 500,000 jobs in two years as it continues to support its suppliers in their bid to become registered business entities in the mining sector.
“There are at present at least one million unregistered business participants in the Nigerian market (considering gold miners, sponsors, dealers, processors, aggregators and gold-workers).
The formalisation, organisation and development we bring to the value chain will provide quick wins to the Nigerian economy,” she added.
Also speaking, the Governor of Ogun State, Senator Ibikunle Amosu, who was represented by the Commissioner for Agriculture, Adepeju Adebajo, expressed enthusiasm about the refinery project, saying it was in line with his government’s industrialisation plan.
Amosun described the project as a major boost to the Nigerian mining sector.
Brent Crude Oil Approaches $70 Per Barrel on Friday
Nigerian Oil Approaches $70 Per Barrel Following OPEC+ Production Cuts Extension
Brent crude oil, against which Nigerian oil is priced, rose to $69 on Friday at 3:55 pm Nigerian time.
Oil price jumped after OPEC and allies, known as OPEC plus, agreed to role-over crude oil production cuts to further reduce global oil supplies and artificially sustain oil price in a move experts said could stoke inflationary pressure.
Brent crude oil rose from $63.86 per barrel on Wednesday to $69 per barrel on Friday as energy investors became more optimistic about the oil outlook.
While certain experts are worried that U.S crude oil production will eventually hurt OPEC strategy once the economy fully opens, few experts are saying production in the world’s largest economy won’t hit pre-pandemic highs.
According to Vicki Hollub, the CEO of Occidental, U.S oil production may not return to pre-pandemic levels given a shift in corporates’ value.
“I do believe that most companies have committed to value growth, rather than production growth,” she said during a CNBC Evolve conversation with Brian Sullivan. “And so I do believe that that’s going to be part of the reason that oil production in the United States does not get back to 13 million barrels a day.”
Hollub believes corporate organisations will focus on optimizing present operations and facilities, rather than seeking growth at all costs. She, however, noted that oil prices rebounded faster than expected, largely due to China, India and United States’ growing consumption.
“The recovery looks more V-shaped than we had originally thought it would be,” she said. Occidental previous projection had oil production recovering to pre-pandemic levels by the middle of 2022. The CEO Now believes demand will return by the end of this year or the first few months of 2022.
“I do believe we’re headed for a much healthier supply and demand environment” she said.
Oil Jumps to $67.70 as OPEC+ Extends Production Cuts
Oil Jumps to $67.70 as OPEC+ Extends Production Cuts
Brent crude oil, against which Nigerian oil is priced, rose to $67.70 per barrel on Thursday following the decision of OPEC and allies, known as OPEC+, to extend production cuts.
OPEC and allies are presently debating whether to restore as much as 1.5 million barrels per day of crude oil in April, according to people with the knowledge of the meeting.
Experts have said OPEC+ continuous production cuts could increase global inflationary pressure with the rising price of could oil. However, Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman said “I don’t think it will overheat.”
Last year “we suffered alone, we as OPEC+” and now “it’s about being vigilant and being careful,” he said.
Saudi minister added that the additional 1 million barrel-a-day voluntary production cut the kingdom introduced in February was now open-ended. Meaning, OPEC+ will be withholding 7 million barrels a day or 7 percent of global demand from the market– even as fuel consumption recovers in many nations.
Experts have started predicting $75 a barrel by April.
“We expect oil prices to rise toward $70 to $75 a barrel during April,” said Ann-Louise Hittle, vice president of macro oils at consultant Wood Mackenzie Ltd. “The risk is these higher prices will dampen the tentative global recovery. But the Saudi energy minister is adamant OPEC+ must watch for concrete signs of a demand rise before he moves on production.”
Gold Hits Eight-Month Low as Global Optimism Grows Amid Rising Demand for Bitcoin
Gold Struggles Ahead of Economic Recovery as Bitcoin, New Gold, Surges
Global haven asset, gold, declined to the lowest in more than eight months on Tuesday as signs of global economic recovery became glaring with rising bond yields.
The price of the precious metal declined to $1,718 per ounce during London trading on Thursday, down from $2,072 it traded in August as more investors continue to cut down on their holdings of the metal.
The previous metal usually performs poorly with rising yields on other assets like bonds, especially given the fact that gold does not provide streams of interest payments. Investors have been jumping on US bonds ahead of President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus package, expected to stoke stronger US price growth.
“We see the rising bond yields as a sign of economic optimism, which has also prompted gold investors to sell some of their positions,” said Carsten Menke of Julius Baer.
Another analyst from Commerzbank, Carsten Fritsch, said that “gold’s reputation appears to have been tarnished considerably by the heavy losses of recent weeks, as evidenced by the ongoing outflows from gold ETFs”.
Experts at Investors King believed the growing demand for Bitcoin, now called the new gold, and other cryptocurrencies in recent months by institutional investors is hurting gold attractiveness.
In a recent report, analysts at Citigroup have started projecting mainstream acceptance for the unregulated dominant cryptocurrency, Bitcoin.
The price of Bitcoin has rallied by 60 percent to $52,000 this year alone. While Ethereum has risen by over 660 percent in 2021.
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