Diamond Centre unveils state-of -the-art machinery

via Diamond Centre unveils state-of -the-art machinery – NewsDay Zimbabwe April 24, 2015

ZIMBABWE Diamond Centre will today officially unveil its new machinery sourced from India to facilitate the cutting and polishing of the precious stone.

The new technology has the capacity to cut between 100 to 700 stones a day as compared to the old technology which used to take up to 15 days to cut one stone.

“With the new technology, one machine can cut between 100 to 700 stones a day,” Zimbabwe Diamond Centre chairperson Lovemore Kurotwi said yesterday.

“The new technology has the capacity to do 700 stones per shift for small stones and 100 for big stones a day. We will be bringing so many sets of machines that per day will be able to polish over 1 000 diamonds.”

The diamond technology centre will house all diamond associates ranging from miners, diamond dealers, cutters and polishers, jewellers, financial institutions and government regulatory authorities.

The centralisation of all the aspects will address accountability, security and transparency issues affecting the diamond industry.

Kurotwi said the new technology would help Zimbabwe realise its quest for beneficiation in the extractive sector.

“In construction, we are almost there, but we are being disturbed by the rainy season because this area has a lot of water. As soon as the rainy season is over, the project will resume. Meanwhile, we were working on the fundamentals because building alone will not give anyone value addition, but what is critical is proper technology,” he said.

He added that the $200 million diamond centre in Mt Hampden, Harare, should be fully operational next month.

“We will open in phases, but we are hoping by end of April the rains would have stopped and by May (the centre) will be operational,” he said.

“Currently, the country is not getting full value for its diamond by selling diamond in the rough stage.

“A lot of money can actually be realised by selling fully processed diamonds.

“Currently, Zimbabwe is complaining about the liquidity crunch, but we can only close that gap by creating an environment where money can circulate in the country. If diamonds are marketed in Zimbabwe, mining companies will get their payment for diamonds and if those diamonds come to local companies for value addition, and if we sell fully processed diamonds, that money will remain in the country and this is the only way to improve liquidity in the country.”

He added that when the rest of the equipment is shipped into the country there would be no reason for the country to fail to realise huge cash turnovers.