Zimbabwe’s state-controlled gems miner Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company (Pvt) Ltd. says it is combing through alternative markets for diamonds, as it battles to outfox a devastating global embargo that has forced it to hand out products for a song.
Dr. Mark Mabhudhu, chief executive officer (CEO) at Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company (ZCDC), said along with the search for markets, fresh exploration programmes had been lined up to locate new gems and expand the operation. He said exploration was due to commence this quarter, continuing into early 2023.
Dr. Mabhudhu said his campaign would sweep through markets like Dubai and Israel to clinch deals that benefit Zimbabwe. The country’s own market is in its infancy. Mabhudhu said it was too small to absorb output from claims that many estimate to be holding 25% of global reserves. “The market in Zimbabwe is very small,” the ZCDC CEO said
“We reserve 10% of our production to local markets, which feed into small factories. About 90% of our diamonds are exported, and most of it is sold from here. But when people come here, they come with a condescending attitude. We are looking outside to places like Dubai, places like Antwerp in Europe, Israel and others where we can take our product,” Dr. Mabhudhu revealed.
Some estimates say as a result of international sanctions, the Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe has had to forfeit about quarter of regular prices of raw diamonds. Dr. Mabhudhu said the firm had invested significantly into tightening security at its operation.
“If diamonds are not secure, they get stolen,” he said, speaking on the day dealers raided a gold mine near Bulawayo, spiriting away with about US$450 000 worth of product. “This process provided assurance to everyone that there is no leakage at all,” Dr. Mabhudhu said.
“We have new sites that we are going to be working on during this quarter into next year to increase production,” he added.
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