According to a statement issued by Alaba Balogun, Deputy Director (Information) of Nigeria’s Ministry of Solid Minerals Development, the Nigerian government engaged the South Korean government during the Seventh Korea-Africa Economic Cooperation conference in Busan, South Korea.
The South Korean government has expressed interest in Nigeria’s lithium reserves. The meeting focused on modifying a Memorandum of Understanding between Nigeria and South Korea on investments in the solid minerals sector signed in 2006.
The Nigerian delegation included representatives from the Ministry of Solid Minerals Development and Oando Mining Company, while South Korea was represented by the Korean Institute of Geosciences and Mineral Resources and Korean Mines Rehabilitation and Mineral Resources Corporation.
Dr Abdulrazaq Garba, Director-General of the Nigerian Geological Survey Agency, represented Dr Dele Alake, Minister of Solid Minerals. He noted that the proposed amendment to the 2006 Memorandum of Understanding “includes training of Nigerian mining professionals in Geochemistry, Geophysics, Ore Modelling, Mineral Processing, research, and exploration of critical minerals such as lithium, nickel, cobalt, manganese, and graphite.”
KIGAM president, Dr. Pyeong Koo-lee, offered to collaborate with Nigeria to explore the large deposits of lithium-bearing pegmatite. He said that KIGAM has the greatest technology for processing lithium ore, and that the beneficiation process can eliminate carbon to enhance ore grade.
Dr. Alex Kwon, Vice President of the state-owned KOMIR, showed interest in foreign mining investment, noting that “KOMIR provides technical and financial assistance and investment in the exploration and mining of solid minerals.”
Dr Abdulrazaq Garba, Director-General of the Nigerian Geological Survey Agency, told journalists in 2022 that high-grade lithium discovered in Nigeria has attracted foreign investors.