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Zim has potential to earn $8 bln from diamonds yearly - report

18 february 2014

Zimbabwe is said to have a potential of earning $8 billion per annum if it beneficiates its rough diamonds.
A local natural resources watchdog was quoted as saying by a weekly newspaper, The Standard, that cutting and polishing of local gems would also create over 200,000 jobs.
“Centre for Natural Resources Governance believes Zimbabwe can create over 210,000 jobs and generate over $8 billion in revenues annually if a significant percentage of its rough diamonds were cut and polished locally,” said the Centre for Natural Resource Governance (CNRG).
It said that the country’s minister of mines and minerals development should declare a quota of 25 percent of rough diamonds to be cut and polished locally.
“We also call for the reduction of licence fees for prospective Zimbabwean diamantaires and for technical and financial assistance to be rendered to them,” said CNRG.
“This will no doubt increase revenues generated from the diamond industry and create approximately over 50,000 jobs for Zimbabweans.”
Diamonds, mainly from Marange are currently on tender at the Antwerp World Diamond Centre.
CNRG said also said that the government should persuade foreign companies intent on buying Zimbabwe’s rough diamonds to establish cutting and polishing factories in the country.
The Zimbabwean government, it said, should seek expert advice from countries such as Botswana, India, Israel, Belgium and the U.S on best practices in cutting and polishing.

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