NATURAL RESOURCES AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPEMENTPost Comment NATURAL RESOURCES AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPEMENT Nigeria
Agriculture, Forestry and other Bash Activities: Kogi State has extensive arable land for cultivation, with good grazing grounds for livestock breeding and large water bodies for fishing. Crop: cultivated include yam, cassava, maize, guinea corn and groundnut. Rice production is encouraged in the flood plains of the rivers, while coffee, cocos orange and cashew nuts are produced in ljumu ani Kabba/Bunu LGAs. Farmers are engaged in share cropping schemes at lyagu, Alade and Adikena. Palm plantations are being rehabilitated and a standard agricultural mechanical workshop is being constructed for the maintenance of machinery.
The Kogi State Agricultural Development Project was established with an initial investmer capital of N144 million to be drawn from a World Bank loan. This was done to improve 300 kilometres of rural roads, provide fifty points of potable water and distribute 50 tonnes of various farm inputs. Much emphasis has been placed on agriculture, but substantial lumbering and saw milling carried out in the forest areas of the state (e.g ljumu and Kabba/Bunu LGAs).
Exotic plants such as teak (tectona grandis) and pulp wood are being planted in different parts of the state. Other basic economic activities include the unincorporated private sector with farmers, fishermen, artisans and people in other activities such a mechanics, vulcanizers, electricians, carpenters bricklayers, plumbers and traders.
Mineral Resources: Kogi state is rich in mineral resources .Most of these minerals are avaliable in commercial quantities and these include coal at KotonKarfe, Okaba and Ogboyaga; limestone and marble at Jakura, Ososo, Ajackuta, Osara, Ekinrin Adde and ltobe; kaolin at Agbaja and iron ore at Agbaja plateau and Itakpe hills.
Coal was mined here during the Nigerian civil war; limestone and marble are exploited at Jakura and iron ore at Itakpe hills. Other minerals include feldspar at Okene and Osara; clay, cassiterite, columbite and tantalite at Egbe; gold at Isanlu, gems, quartz, mica and crude oil at Idah (Appendix 1).
Industrial Development: The available land, water, minerals, agricultural resources and forestry, hydro power resources, availability of electricity . Ajaokuta and the higher educational institutions in the state are potential sources of input for industri alisation, if properly developed and maintained. There were sixteen industrial establishments operating in the state in 1992 (Appendix II).
These include Itakpe Iron Ore Mining Company and the Ajaokuta Steel Company, both of which could gen erate subsidiary industries such as iron and stee , foundries, cement plant, tar installation plant, carbon black and carbon graphic electrodes industry light forging, metal fabrication and agricultural tools , and implements industries.
Development Potentials: Kogi State's endow g ment of natural resources includes land, water, mineral and forest resources. The vast land area of the state provides adequate opportunity for the location of various types of industrial and other economic activities.
The water resources of Rivers Niger and Benue and their several tributaries could provide ample water supply for people, animals and various industries when fully harnessed. The confluence of Rivers Niger and Benue could be an important are for tourist attraction. Fishery could be developed on a large scale with allied fishery industries.
The waterfalls at Osome and Ofejiji are potential sources of hydro-electricity. The water from the rivers could support large irrigation schemes for raising various crops, including wheat. The forests provide wood for timber and fuel.
Local Sourcing of Raw Materials: Agricultural products such as grains (maize, guinea corn, rice and others), root crops (yam, cassava and others), groundnut, beans, soya beans, cocoa and coffee provide the needed raw materials for cereals, flour beverages and other food processing industry Livestock and fisheries could provide raw materials for meat and fish canning industries.
The forest provide wood for plywood and other wood related industries to produce such items as toothpicks, matches and other household utensils while foliage and minerals provide raw materials for chemical and pharmaceutical industries. Mineral resources in the state provide immense local sources of raw materials for the manufacture of various products .
Coal and iron ore provide raw materials for the iron and steel industry and for the manufacture of machinery, alloys, oxides, tools, rails, linoleum and fillers. Coal also provides raw material for making ammonia, tar, cyanide, explosives and organic compounds. Limestone and marble at Jakura, Ososo, Ajaokuta, Osara, EkinrinAdde and ltobe supply raw materials for making cement, glass, lime, ceramics, carbon dioxide, ethylene, caustic soda, carbide, paint, floor slabs, terrazzo chips and building stones amongst others.
Feldspar from Osara, Okene and Egbe and clay obtained everywhere could supply the needed raw materials for glass, ceramics and pottery. Kaolin from Agbaja is an important raw material for chalk making, paint, kaolin poltice and Plaster of Paris (POP).
Cassiterite, columbite and tantalite from Egbe are used for tin coating and alloys while talc and mica from Isanlu, Ogborun and Mopa supply the raw materials for ceramics, paints and electrical equipment. Gold from Isanlu in Yagba East LGA, gems and ornamental stones from Lokoja, quartz from Okene, Okehiand Egbe and crude petroleum from Idah are other important minerals in the state.
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