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02.03.2015
“We believe in the superior craftsmanship of our Belgian Master Cutters”
jean_claude_muller_x.jpgS. Muller & Sons founded in 1955 is now a world-renowned diamond manufacturer managed by the third generation of diamantaires led by Jean Claude Muller, the company’s CEO. S. Muller & Sons has an in-house diamond factory, one of the few that still remain in Antwerp, which is producing the now famous Hearts & Arrows Diamonds. The company’s involvement in Hearts & Arrows initiated with its relationship with Mr. Takanori Tamura, the inventor of the Eight-Star Diamond. While attending the Antwerp Diamond Trade Fair last February, our correspondents – helped by the Antwerp World Diamond Centre and S. Muller & Sons - took an opportunity to visit the company’s diamond factory, which resulted in the interview with Jean Claude Muller below.

24.02.2015
Namibia-De Beers talks scheduled to end in June
isak_katali_x.jpgDe Beers and the Namibian government have been negotiating over a new diamond-sales agreement for quite some time now. The envisaged new deal would replace a 2007 agreement that allowed De Beers to sell the stones through the Namibia Diamond Trading Company (NDTC), a joint venture between Windhoek and De Beers. Namibia’s mines and energy minister Isak Katali told Rough & Polished’s Mathew Nyaungwa on the sidelines of a mining conference in Cape Town recently that the negotiations are now envisaged to end in June this year, if not earlier.

16.02.2015
The gemmological education is very important for the industry to build a sound and strong edifice
bakul_mehta_x.jpgThe Gemmological Institute of India (GII) plays an important role in the local diamond industry, offering a broad range of services, which include diamond grading and certification, detection of diamond treatments and identification of synthetic diamonds, as well as research and gemological education courses highly popular and widely recognized in the trade in India and abroad having trained more than 5,000 students. The GII runs the only gem and diamond-testing laboratory in Mumbai fully equipped with state-of-the-art instruments. Bakul Mehta, Chairman of the GII, answers the questions from Rough&Polished in the exclusive interview below.





Lesotho’s proposed ownership law to affect diamond firms

02.08.2012

Lesotho is set to introduce a new law that will limit foreign mining firms’ ownership in local mines to 49 percent, while the remaining 51 percent will be reserved for natives (government included).
Diamond companies to be affected by this proposed law included Gem Diamonds, which owns 70 percent of the Letseng mine, and Namakwa Diamonds, which owns the majority of the Kao mine.
Gem’s flagship Letseng diamond mine had produced 57,116 carats during the first six months of the year ended June 2012.
It said the mine also achieved an average value of $2‚133 per carat during the first half of the year compared with $3‚052 realised a year earlier.
Namakwa on the other hand realised revenues of about $4.2 million from its third sale of Kao rough diamonds in Antwerp, with achieved prices 3.4 percent higher than initial management estimates.
However, with all the positive news coming from the diamond miners in Lesotho, the country’s new Prime Minister Tom Thabane said the gems were not being mined successfully in a manner that benefits the country, hence the move to review the ownership structure.
"We also have lots of diamonds, but are not doing so well," he said.
Thabane said that the proposed law would not affect the non-mining sector as was the case in Zimbabwe under its controversial indigenisation law.
“The localisation issues mentioned are in the mining sector — other sectors are not affected,” he was quoted by Businessday as saying.
"But it is still a debate. At the moment we do not think we will follow the status quo.”

Mathew Nyaungwa, Editor in Chief of the African Bureau, Rough&Polished

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