via Zimbabwe-EU set for diamond trade talks | The Source By Chipo Musoko, November 11 2013
Government and diamond mining officials left the country on Monday for Antwerp, Belgium to tie up agreements on Zimbabwe exports, two months after the European Union lifted sanctions on the state-owned mine Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation, the mines minister said.
The EU lifted sanctions on the ZMDC in September which allowed Zimbabwe to negotiate better prices after relying on middlemen to undercut the EU sanctions for several years.
“It is important for (Zimbabwe) to familiarise itself with the marketing systems, regulatory frameworks and logistical issues because, we want all systems to be in place ready to market our diamonds,” Mines minister Walter Chidhakwa told The Source.
He said diamonds exports should start soon after the delegation’s return.
Last month, officials from the Antwerp World Diamond Council (AWDC), the world’s leading diamond trading hub visited the country and toured diamond mines in Chiadzwa area in eastern Zimbabwe.
The Zimbabwe government has said it will use extra cash generated from diamond sales to finance its ambitious Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation (ZimAsset) which it says will grow the economy by up to 10 percent by 2018.
ZMDC is the primary holder of mining concessions in the country and owns diamond miner Marange Resources.
It also partners five other diamond mining companies – Mbada Diamonds, Diamond Mining Corporation, Anjin Investments, Gye Nyame Diamonds and Kusena Diamonds which are also exploiting the gems.