He said this during a workshop of solid minerals development held inside the Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The President said the coal resource was an excellent opportunity for the nation to diversify its energy stock.
Jonathan said, “Nigeria has about 44 varieties of minerals in more than 500 locations, seven of which are recognised as strategic minerals owing to their high economic potential.
“The country has the capacity to expand the contribution of the solid minerals sector to the economy. The fact that the minerals are spread across the country is a blessing as every part of Nigeria can prosper from them.
“For example, the coal resource represents an excellent opportunity for us to diversify our energy stock.
“It is our intention that 30 per cent of our electricity generation should come from coal, using environmentally-friendly and clean technology. Nigeria is endowed with abundant coal reserves of the required quality necessary for power generation.”
To that extent, the President said he welcomed the growing synergy between the ministries of Mines and Steel Development and Power.
This, he said, was made manifest in their collaborative effort to attract investors to coal-fired power generation opportunities, adding that he expected the cooperation to continue.
During the event, a Memorandum of Understanding on coal to power was signed for the development of the Ezinmo Coal Block in Enugu and a 1,000 megawatts coal power generating plant.
The MoU was signed between the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development and HTG-Pacific Energy Consortium for the development of the Ezinmo Coal Bricks.
The Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, said the MoU was for the utilisation of the mining licence granted by the Federal Government for the coal block.
He said the licence was granted to an indigenous company with Chinese partners, HTG-Pacific Energy Consortium, for the exploitation and mining of the coal block at Ezinmo.
Information from Punch was used in this report.