Top 28 Nigeria Natural Resources And Their Uses

What are some examples of Nigeria natural resources and their uses? Nigeria is a country located in West Africa it is recognized over the years for its large supply of a plethora of natural resources. Being endowed with a variety of natural resources, the Nigerian economy depends and to a certain extent, thrives on the exploration, transformation, and commercialization of these natural resources.

Today, we are going to dig through some natural resources that can be found in Nigeria. Our list of Natural resources is going to be split in two; the first would highlight and discuss the agricultural resources found in Nigeria, and the second, will explore the mineral resources found in Nigeria.

Agricultural Resources Found In Nigeria

Nigeria is blessed with an abundance of a wide variety of agricultural resources. While its agricultural sector remains quite stunted in comparison with its oil sector, it is important to understand that many people have made a living from tapping into the agricultural sector.

Before the discovery of oil in Nigeria, the agricultural sector accounted for over 90 per cent of the Nigerian commonwealth and resources; since the country was capable of producing food and exporting agricultural products.

Sadly, over 50 years after the country gained independence along with the discovery and exploration of oil in Nigeria, agriculture has been on a steady decline.

But the Nigerian economy has a lot to gain from reinvesting in the agricultural sector, in fact, there are so many agricultural resources that are highly sought after all around the world, and many more that make up the number of agricultural resources that can be found in Nigeria.

These agricultural resources include;


Top 28 Nigeria Natural Resources And Their Uses


Used for making clothing fabrics, cotton is a desired resource all around the world, as it is a commonwealth human basic need of being clothed. In Nigeria, cotton can be found in the Northern region and some parts of the Southwest region; Ogun, Zamfara, Jigawa, Sokoto, Kaduna, Ondo, Kano, Katsina, Oyo, Kebbi and Kwara.

Oil palm

Oil palm is highly sorted after nationally, especially for its pharmaceutical and cosmetic uses. In Nigeria, the major states that produce oil palm are Cross River, Akwa Ibom, Ekiti, Delta, Bayelsa, Ogun, Rivers, Anambra, Ondo, Enugu, Imo, Oyo, Abia, Ogun and Edo state.


It is a major food that is consumed by every Nigerian. The states in Nigeria that are known to cultivate rice are Kebbi, Kano, Ebonyi, Anambra, Niger, and Taraba, Kebbi.

Hides and Skin

Used for making bags, belts and some clothing materials, hides and skin are found in states like; Kano, Adamawa, Bauchi, Gombe, Niger, Zamfara, Borno, Taraba, Jigawa, Kebbi and also some parts of Oyo, Kwara, Nassarawa and Kaduna.


Nigeria is ranked among the highest producers of Cocoa in Africa and the world at large. Cocoa is used for making various beverages and foods. The states that records high production of this crop are Ondo, Osun, Cross River, Ekiti, Oyo, and Edo.


A very useful type of wood, especially in the construction of buildings and furniture, timber is highly demanded in every part of the world. The Nigerian states with the highest production of Timber are; Ondo, Cross River, Ogun, Edo, Delta, Ekiti, Osun and Oyo.


Wheat is processed into flour, beer, and various other foodstuffs all around the world. In Nigeria, it is grown mainly in the northern parts and is found in states like; Borno, Yobe, Jigawa, Kano, Zamfara, Katsina, Adamawa, Sokoto and Kebbi.


Rubber has a seemingly never-ending variety of uses. It is always highly sought after in various industries around the world. The states that produce rubber are Edo, Delta, Ondo, Ogun, Abia, Anambra, Akwa Ibom, Cross River, Rivers, Ebonyi and Bayelsa States.

Sugar Cane

Sugar cane can be produced in Nigeria, in places like; Sokoto, Taraba, Niger, Kogi, Kwara and most parts of the northern region. Sugar cane can be used for making sugar, which is used in all parts of the world.


Groundnut is used for making food products. It is usually processed into groundnut oil and is also used in making pastries and confectionaries.  These are the major places in Nigeria with high groundnut production: Niger, Kano, Jigawa, Zamfara, Kebbi, Sokoto, Katsina, Kaduna, Adamawa, Yobe, Borno, Taraba, Plateau, Nasarawa, Bauchi, and Gome state.


While Taraba, Benue, Niger and Nassarawa are the major yam producing states, Benue happens to be the largest yam producer in Nigeria.


The major cassava producing states are Imo, Ondo, Anambra, Kogi, Taraba, Cross River, Enugu, Ogun, Benue, Delta, and Edo state. Cassava has a myriad of uses and is a major source of food for the Nigerian economy.


Cashew is highly needed all around the world. It can further be processed to get cashew nut; a nice delicacy that can be exported to boost the economy. The states that cashew can be found are; Enugu, Oyo, Anambra, Kogi, Osun, Abia, Ondo, Benue, Cross River, Imo, Ekiti, Ebonyi, Kwara and Nassarawa.


Maize has a variety of uses and it is easy to grow. It can be found in the Northern and Central regions of Nigeria, in states such as Niger, Kaduna, Taraba, Plateau, and Adamawa.


Used mainly as food for both humans and livestock, it is also a natural resource that the country depends on.  Cowpea is majorly grown/produced in areas in Borno, Zamfara, Sokoto, Kano, Gombe and Yobe state in Nigeria.


It is used largely for animal consumption and also a little for human consumption. Foodstuffs like soymilk, tofu and cooking oil are gotten from soybean. In Nigeria, soybean can be found to be cultivated and produced in states like Benue, Kaduna, Nasarawa, Kebbi, Kwara, Oyo, Jigawa, Borno, Bauchi, Lagos, Sokoto, Zamfara and FCT.

It is no secret that the Nigerian economy depends on the natural resources found in the country, and it goes without saying that Nigeria is blessed with a vast amount of natural mineral resources.

The public and the economy have leaned towards the development and exploration of its mineral resources, especially the oil and gas sector. While making use of these mineral resources to develop and build the economy is good in and of itself, it is, however, dangerous to focus on the mineral sector and neglect the agricultural and human resources.

Unfortunately, this is the case with regard to how the Nigerian government manages its natural resources.

The mineral resources found in Nigeria are;

Petroleum and Natural gas

Petroleum and natural gas are two peas in a pod, this means that they go hand in hand as one cannot exist without the other. Nigeria produces approximately a 2.5million barrels of crude oil every day and the gas reserves total over 160 trillion cubic meters.

There are a total of eight states in Nigeria that can be considered as the major oil-producing states of the country which are; Delta, Akwa Ibom, Edo, Rivers, Bayelsa, Io, Abia and Ondo.

These oil-producing states send their barrels to the four oil refineries in the country.


Due to its low sulfur and ash content, Nigerian coal can be considered eco-friendly and is lauded as one of the best coal in the world. In Nigeria, coal was first discovered in Enugu state, also known as “The Coal City”.

Today, coal can be found in various other locations in the country, namely; Benue, Zamfara, Ondo, Plateau, and Nasarawa. Much like petroleum and natural gas, coal serves as fuel and is highly sort after by many Western countries. In fact, the government has started plans to privatize this resource.


Talc is a natural resource with unique properties that allow for it to be used in the making of ceramics, paints, paper, roofing materials, insecticides, rubbers, the list goes on. It can be found in Niger, Kogi, Kaduna, Ogun and Osun state.


Gold is used not just in making adornments and jewellery, it is also used in electronic devices. Knowing its value, one would think that this resource would be explored more, however, the sad reality is that while it is precious, it is extremely difficult to mine and with the booming of the oil and gas sector, the gold industry is less dominant.

Gold can be found in the following states in Nigeria; Oyo, Kebbi, Sokoto, Niger, Zamfara, Kwara, Ebonyi, Edo, Kaduna, Bauchi, and Sokoto.

Iron Ore

It can be found in Kogi, Enugu, Niger and Abuja (FCT). Iron has too many uses to list and it has become an intricate aspect of our infrastructural development as a country. The Delta state Steel company and Ajaokuta Steel Company are the two major steel manufacturing and Iron ore processing companies in Nigeria.


Used in asphalt production for the manufacturing of roads, Bitumen is a very important Natural resource. Studies have shown that Bitumen reserves in Nigeria are actually two times the volume of Nigeria’s crude oil.

Shockingly, these reserves have not been exploited and the country still imports bitumen from outside the country. This mineral resource can be found in Ogun state, Lagos state, Edo State, and Ondo State.


Usually used in the production of cement, chalks, and Plaster of Paris (POP), its importance should never be underestimated. Nigeria has approximately one billion tonnes of gypsum deposits, scattered across its states. It can be found in places like Anambra, Delta, Imo, Borno, Bauchi, Adamawa, Benue, Sokoto, Kogi, Ondo, Edo, Gombe and Bayelsa states.

Zinc and Lead

Nigeria is home to over ten million tonnes of Lead and Zinc. They can be used in the construction of buildings, pipes and various other civil structures. They can be found in states like Akwa-Ibom, Abia, Abuja, Benue, Enugu, Cross River, Taraba, Plateau, Ebonyi and Kano.


Gemstones are one of the solid minerals in Nigeria. Used for making jewellery, accessories, and various other adornments, gemstones are very important natural resources that are sought after in all parts of the globe.

They can be found in the northern region of the country, in states like; Bauchi, Kaduna and Plateau states.

Baryte and Bentonite

Used mainly in drilling and petroleum exploration, these special mud constituents are of great importance to the economy and oil sector. There are over seven hundred million reserves of Baryte and Bentonite spread across the country.

They can be located in the Northern region of the country such as; Adamawa, Borno, Plateau, Taraba, and Bauchi states.


Used for making drugs that treat diarrhoea, cholera, and dysentery, Kaolin is of great use to the country and is sought after by countries around the world both for its pharmaceutical and cosmetic use.

It is usually found in clay reserves. It is found in states like; Adamawa, Delta, Sokoto, Kogi, Kaduna, Ekiti, Katsina, Ondo, Plateau, Ogun, and Borno state.

Rock Salt

Rock salt is a health and pharmaceutical gem as it has so many medicinal uses and cosmetic value. Nigeria is home to over a 1.5million tonnes of rock salt, scattered across the country. It can be found in all states.

What other Nigeria natural resources and their uses did we miss? Leave your comments below.

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