#mugabe backed Dubai diamond exchange has failed

via Mugabe backed Dubai has failed, minister 04/05/2014 by NewZimbabwe I Agencies

A CABINET minister has said the Dubai Diamond Exchange (DDE) has failed to be a trustworthy market for Zimbabwean diamonds after delaying to remit proceeds from a March sale.

Early last month President Robert Mugabe, accompanied by his wife Grace, travelled to the United Arab Emirates and visited the Dubai Exchange as the government sought new markets for the country’s diamonds.

Speaking during the visit, Mugabe was full of praise for DDE, saying: “It is encouraging to see how Dubai has developed tailor-made strategies to an industry which was new to them only 12 years ago.

“We have been overwhelmed by the enthusiasm and conviction in which policies have been pursued and businesses successfully attracted.

“We are happy to be part of this success story and look forward to continue a mutual beneficial relationship with Dubai in the future exploration and exploitation of our diamond business.”

But it has emerged Zimbabwe has not received the US$30 million earned from some sold 400,000 carats of diamonds sold in Dubai in March this year.

The auction was Zimbabwe’s third after two other auctions in Antwerp, Belgium in December and February.

Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa was quoted by the Sunday Mail newspaper on Sunday as saying that the DDE had failed the test and hinted that the country might discontinue diamond sales there.

“Naturally, DDE have failed the test. Remember, when we went there we were testing the market. Why would we continue selling our diamonds in Dubai under such conditions?” the minister said.

He added: “Obviously, the delay (in remitting the money) is affecting us. We could have used that money to fund some of the projects awaiting completion. Naturally, the delay is crippling the mining companies that need the money to run operations.

“I am not sure of the reason why it has taken this long for us to receive our money. I haven’t found the time to talk to Minister Chidhakwa to find out what is really happening, but I am eager to engage him so that I know what is happening.

The delay in the remittance of the money is said to be affecting operations of the mining companies that sold the gems.

“We are concerned that we have not received that money; we are still waiting. Obviously this has negatively affected our mining operations. Right now, we are refocusing on new areas at the mine. We need inputs such as equipment and diesel,” said Jinan managing director Mack Ncube.

Munyaradzi Machacha, of Anjin Investments similarly moaned: “We also have creditors who need to be paid. So, we are hoping we will receive the money as soon as possible.”

However deputy mines minister, Fred Moyo, said it was too early to condemn DDE.

“The Secretary (Professor Francis Gudyanga) is pushing hard for the organiser to transfer the money as soon as possible,” he said.

“What gave us confidence (in the Dubai market) was the price. We cannot condemn anyone at the moment as we are still gathering what is happening. But obviously the delay will raise questions.

“I do not think this has something to do with capacity, but maybe administration issues. We will get to the bottom of the matter, whether the delays were deliberate or not.”

The government had hailed the Dubai auction for offering relatively higher prices than those offered in Antwerp.

A carat in Antwerp fetched US$72 in February’s sale while in Dubai a carat was fetching US$76.

From the US$30 million generated in Dubai, the government is expecting to get US$4.39 million as royalties.



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    Perhaps the writer of this piece, as well as the decision makers involved should dig a little deeper to find the truth. A very quick web search reveals that global cut diamond prices rose in March, and in fact set a 20 month Rappaport Index high.

    I’m also confused. The article states that the nations share of the $30M February diamond sale amounted to $4.39M royalties. And yet we are told that the nation receives 50% of the profit because it is a 50% partner of each of the companies involved. Does that mean that only $8.78M of the $30M sale was profit? That would mean that the companies are claiming $21.22M expenses, correct? Does that mean that they are paying Cuthbert Dube size saleries to each of their managers?

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    Little dorrit 9 years ago

    The cheque is in the post. Delayed – or diverted?

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    tawanda 9 years ago

    Those big salaries are divided up between many hyenas and other inhabitants of the twilight. Dube is only the nominal payee.

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    Zim is often a comedy show – the diamond money was always going to be diverted – it is now in RGM’s a/c in Singapore or in Grace a/c in Dubai – wake up journalists !!

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    Mlimo 9 years ago

    As I commented when the exchange was first opened the diamonds go there the money goes to Singapore. Pure theft plain and simple.

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    Mlimo 9 years ago

    A carat of good diamond goes for $1000 not $76 . Industrials go for that price .

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    Little dorrit 9 years ago

    Perhaps we can engage Nikuv or Shalom Financial Services (or Simon Wisenthal Foundation) to “trace” the payment? Suggest we set up a fund in the diaspora to help out our “poor” govt in recovering this debt?

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    mutongi gava 9 years ago

    Bhora mughedhi

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    Call me a sceptic I never once believed Robert Dragged his weary arsze all the way to Dubai for the good if the country. I believe he went up there to personally see to it that the money is deposited in Bona’s account. It makes a tidy stash for the daughter….

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    This article does not make a lot of sense, some months ago this was a delayed payment that they had confirmation had been sent = late but at least paid. Two months down the road and it had not been paid/remitted? Either the funds have been stolen and are claiming non payment (a crime in Dubai that attracts immediate incarceration before trial – reminds me of some cases in Zim) to cover up the theft??? It does not add up…

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    Mukanya 9 years ago

    The heading should read as “Mugabe Dubai Diamond Deal Duped”