Sustainability in Extractive Industries conference held in Nigeria

Orji Ogbonnaya Orji
Orji Ogbonnaya Orji | Contributed photo
The fourth annual Sustainability in the Extractive Industries (SITEI) conference recently took place in Abuja, Nigeria.

The event was organized by Nigerian business and networking group CSR-in-Action and the Nigerian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), an arm of Nigeria's government chapter of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI).

This year's theme was "Unlocking the Hidden Potential in the Extractive Industries."

One of the event's presenters was NEITI acting Secretary Orji Ogbonnaya Orji, who said the key to success for the continent's extractive sector was cooperation between Africa's legislature, businesses, local governments and citizens.

"It is important to pursue an inclusive, collaborative effort that will shift attention to unlock the potential in the solid-minerals sector,” Orji said.

Over the last decade, over 20,000 geologists have joined the mining sector in Nigeria. Additionally, investors -- both private-sector and foreign -- have become increasingly interested in the industry.

Challenges for the sector were identified as political uncertainty, no incentives for private-sector investors, inaccurate or missing data and limited access to capital. Industry officials discussed ways to work through these issues, including the development of more transparent reporting by NEITI and other organizations.

"The process has painstakingly captured the views of speakers and delegates, and a working group will be immediately set up to synthesize the recommendations and propagate key actionable solutions," Amos Gagar, director of SITEI event partner and global auditing firm PricewaterhouseCoopers, said. "We eagerly look forward to presenting a progress report at the conference next year.”

CSR-in-Action founder and CEO Bekeme Masade agreed.

“The working group is the most critical aspect of SITEI," Masade said. "As with every conference, the tangible, actionable outcomes form the basis of engagement to achieve tangible results between now and the next conference, and we are more than ready to hit the ground running."

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