‘Leverage on experts to expand diamond sector’

THE government should leverage on re-engagement with the international community and other regional countries with a view to expanding the local diamond cutting and polishing sector, an industry body has said.

BY MTHANDAZO NYONI

Diamond Beneficiation Association of Zimbabwe chairperson, Richard Mvududu told NewsDay that the engagement with the international community and regional countries would help maximise value on local diamond cutting and polishing industry.

“There is lots of positivity in general and good international outlook regarding Zimbabwe. Our expectations from the new administration is to leverage engagement with the international community and other regional developed countries such as South Africa and Botswana with a view to expand our local diamond cutting and polishing, cleaning, sorting and cutting and polishing activities,” he said.

“This will help maximise on value. Our local cutting and polishing factories have already exhibited their resilience and, therefore, need to be nurtured with clear and deliberate diamond value addition policies.”

Mvududu said they expected the new government to engage the local industry who “already has knowledge of the key success factors of this multi-billion dollar industry and other stakeholders in the crafting of the diamond policy”.

“We would like our new government to take time to understand and visit our existing facilities, however, small, so that they have an appreciation of what we have in store so that when they engage with other developed countries they would be coming from a position of informed knowledge. We strongly encourage a tripartite approach in all our diamond endeavours,” he said.

The body also expects the government to promote ease of doing business and support local beneficiation of diamonds, as well as considering toll manufacturing with the existing factories.

“We have been talking about toll manufacturing for quite some time now and believe the time is right to implement especially considering the government new thrust to re-engagement and job creation,” Mvududu said.

Zimbabwe has been lagging behind in value addition of diamonds resulting in the exportation of rough diamonds.

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