ZIMBABWE has resumed diamond sales and hopes to build a sustainable market following the merger of diamond companies which operated in Chiadzwa under a State-owned company called Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company (ZCDC), a wholly-owned State company.
BY FREEMAN MAKOPA
The new diamond giant has acquired a new plant worth $100 million for the processing of conglomerate, which will be commissioned in the last quarter of the year by President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
Mines minister Winston Chitando made these disclosures while addressing a Press conference yesterday to “ensure transparency and accountability in mining revenue, including diamond”.
Government has, in the past, been blamed for keeping the nation in the dark pertaining alluvial diamond mining activities and resisting stakeholder calls to accede to the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), a framework which holds countries to account for revenue collection and expenditure.
“The recent ZCDC Diamond Sales Tender 3 conducted from August 28 to September 12, 2018 has been concluded, where 423 066,43 carats were put on sale,” Chitando said.
“The government is pleased to announce that the submitted bid value totalled $28,3 million, and ZCDC and MMCZ [Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe] are currently invoicing the successful bidders for payment. The bid average price was about $67 per carat.”
The buyers who participated in the auction were from the United Arab Emirates, India, Israel, Belgium, Canada, Hong Kong, Namibia and South Africa.
Chitando said ZCDC would be conducting two more tenders between October and December this year.
“The recently concluded sale comes after ZCDC had temporarily exited the market in February 2018 to allow for the development and implantation of an effective diamond value management framework and establishment of a robust marketing and sales strategy,” he said.
ZCDC, through MMCZ, plans to explore selling opportunities in Antwerp, Dubai and Shanghai.
Following the depletion of surface alluvial deposits in Chiadzwa, the company has shifted to conglomerate mining, a low-grade deposit relative to eluvium, which requires a different processing plant.