An Australian mining company has discovered a potentially “world class and highly unusual” Nickel in Nigeria.
According to the report, the private mining syndicate is reportedly headed by Hugh Morgan, an Australian businessman and former CEO of Western Mining Corporation.
“The discovery is unusual because the nickel is found in small balls up to 3mm in diameter of a high purity in shallow soils in what could be the surface expression of a much bigger hard-rock nickel field,” the newspaper said.
“The nickel balls, rumoured to grade better than 90 per cent nickel and thought to be a world first given their widespread distribution, offer the potential for early cashflow from a simple and low-cost screening operation to fund a full assessment of the find that has exploration circles buzzing.”
Details of the discovery are sketchy, according to the newspaper, but it was rumoured to be close to Dangoma, a small farming town about 160km northeast located in the North-West state of Kaduna.
NigerianEye research shows that Nickel is a silvery-white lustrous metal with a slight golden tinge. It belongs to the transition metals and is hard and ductile. Pure nickel, powdered to maximize the reactive surface area, shows a significant chemical activity, but larger pieces are slow to react with air under standard conditions because an oxide layer forms on the surface and prevents further corrosion. It is a chemical element with symbol Ni and atomic number 28
The commodity is currently trading at 4.44 US Dollar per lb.
When asked, Olayinka Oyebode, Chief Press Secretary to the minister of solid minerals, told reporters that he had no details of the discovery but confirmed his principal is scheduled to be in Australia next week.
Kayode Fayemi, Minister of Solid Minerals recently told Bloomberg that one of the Nigeria government’s priorities is to meet its annual steel demand of 6.8 metric tons, from a current output of less than 2.5 metric tons, produced mainly from scrap iron.