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De Beers approves $1 billion spending at Botswana mine

De Beers approves $1 billion spending at Botswana mine

Global diamond giant De Beers said it will go ahead with a planned $1 billion investment to extend the life of its flagship Jwaneng mine in Botswana, even as last year's downturn in gem demand persists. The Anglo American unit and the Botswana government, which jointly own Debswana Diamond Company, have approved the spending that will convert the Jwaneng pit into an underground operation. Debswana said in 2018 it planned an investment to extend the lifespan of the mine by 11 years from 2024. De Beers said the spending is necessary as the long-term supply of rough gems is expected to…
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De Beers keeps production target despite supply glut

De Beers keeps production target despite supply glut

DE BEERS, a unit of Anglo American, is sticking to its 2023 production target because it is confident of the long-term outlook, its chief executive said, despite a glut in diamond supply amid weakening demand. Global demand for diamonds has fallen to levels not seen since the pandemic and De Beers, at its latest sale in October, recorded an 82% decline in demand from a year earlier to $80 million as global economic challenges continue to impact appetite for luxury goods. In recent months major industry players have taken measures to ease the supply glut, with India - which cuts and polishes…
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Botswana conducts due diligence on HB Antwerp stake, president says

Botswana conducts due diligence on HB Antwerp stake, president says

BOTSWANA is conducting due diligence on HB Antwerp, as the world's top diamond producing country by value seeks to finalise a deal to acquire a 24% shareholding in the Belgian gem trader, President Mokgweetsi Masisi said. At the height of talks for a new sales contract with De Beers in March, Botswana announced a deal to become a shareholder in HB Antwerp and to supply the trader with 10% of the rough diamond output from the state-owned Okavango Diamond Company (ODC) for five years. But the proposed deal was called into question in September when Lucara Diamond terminated its sales agreement with the Belgian…
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De Beers agrees five-year wage deal with S.African union

De Beers agrees five-year wage deal with S.African union

ANGLO American Plc's De Beers signed a five-year wage deal with the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) which represents workers at its South African diamond operations. The agreement will see employees receiving a 7% increase in 2023, and 6% in the subsequent years until April 30 2028, De Beers said in a statement. The increase takes the minimum entry-level basic wage to 17,630 rand ($954.30) per month, excluding allowances, De Beers said in a statement. The agreement also allows for participation in Anglo American employee share ownership plans, it added. De Beers Group Managed Operations Managing Director Moses Madondo said the…
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Botswana’s Debswana terminates mining contract with Australia’s Thiess

Botswana’s Debswana terminates mining contract with Australia’s Thiess

Debswana Mining Company, owned by De Beers and the Botswana government, said on Tuesday it has terminated a $1.3 billion contract with a unit of Australia’s Thiess to extend the lifespan of its Jwaneng diamond mine and will carry out the project in-house. Debswana, among the world’s largest diamond producers, declined to provide a reason for terminating the contract for the extension project, known as Cut 9, which was awarded to Majwe Mining in 2019. The nine-year project is expected to extend the life of Debswana’s flagship mine to 2035, yielding an estimated 53 million carats of rough diamonds. “The…
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South Africa’s diamond polishers look to lockdown lovers to add shine

South Africa’s diamond polishers look to lockdown lovers to add shine

TANISHA HEIDBERG and SISIPHO SKWEYIYA SOUTH Africa's diamond industry, famed for sales the world over and supplying gems for the British crown jewels, is looking closer to home to revive its fortunes following the coronavirus slump. Even before the new virus triggered the COVID-19 pandemic, diamond prices and demand were weak. Global economic weakness has exaggerated that and Anglo American's De Beers unit last week reported a plunge in earnings. Some of the many small players who polish the rough diamonds that De Beers and other miners unearth say they have been pleasantly surprised by the extent of lockdown jewellery-buying…
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Botswana sees 7.7 % growth in 2021 on diamond industry recovery

Botswana sees 7.7 % growth in 2021 on diamond industry recovery

BOTSWANA’S economy will rebound and grow 7.7% in 2021 from an 8.9% contraction forecast this year, on the back of improved sentiment in the global diamond industry, according to the finance minister. Botswana's economy shrank by 24% in the second quarter of 2020 as coronavirus lockdowns at home and abroad slowed domestic economic activity and severely constrained diamond sales. Buyers of the precious gem were locked out of the capital Gaborone, where they come to purchase diamonds from De Beers. Mining is the sparsely populated southern African country's biggest revenue earner and accounts for just under 20% of total gross…
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