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Zimbabwe now 7th in global diamond production

Story by Stanley James, Business Editor

ZIMBABWE emerged as the seventh biggest natural diamond producer on the globe with output of over four million carats worth US$420 million annually.

This was revealed in the latest production statistics released by the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS).

The KPCS, which is the regulator of trade, production, and processing of gems globally, has revealed in its latest rankings that Zimbabwe is among the top 10 diamond producing nations.

The revelation comes at a time the government is also expecting diamond production to contribute massively towards a US$12 billion mining industry by end of the year.

Zimbabwe, which is currently chairing the KPCS, has accepted the rankings with development economist, Dr Prosper Chitambara describing the move as an indication of global confidence in the country’s diamond production.

“The need to scale up investments within the country’s value chains should continue because the revelations by the KPCS shows that Zimbabwe still has more potential for diamond investments and what is needed is that ability to attract the right investment especially technology that can unlock value while also creating opportunities for more employment creation, basically value addition should be the hallmark for the success and growth of Zimbabwe’s diamond value chains,” he said.

According to the KPCS, Botswana is the biggest diamond producer globally, with output valued at US$4 billion.

Russian is second, followed by Angola, Canada, South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Sierra Leone and Tanzania.

In a related development, Zimbabwe will next month host the KPCS Plenary Session where several issues relating to the production of the commodity, trade and challenges will be at the core of discussions, with the United Arab Emirates expected to be the next chair of the global diamond regulator.

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