Angolan head of state, João Lourenço, Wednesday, said that the country has improved in raising of revenues from diamond sales, as a result of the introduction of the new trading policy of this ore, in June 2018.
João Lourenço was speaking at the opening of the “International Conference and Exhibition on the Angolan Mining Sector”.
The Angolan Head of State mentioned the State and the producing companies as being among the beneficiaries of best collection of the revenues.
The president pointed out that the introduction of the new diamond trading policy ended the former monopoly in this activity.
After predicting the creation in Angola of a gemstone trading exchange, the Angolan president welcomed the emergence of more private investments in the cut segment, which culminated in the opening of three cut factories in the last two years.
To improve this sector’s contribution to Gross Domestic Product (GDP), the president announced that the Executive is promoting the emergence of more diamond-cutting and jewelery factories, mainly in the provinces producing rough diamonds.
He highlighted the initiative aimed at the construction of a Diamond Development Hub in Saurimo (Lunda Sul), to house the technical and administrative infrastructures to support this activity.
The project aims to bring together domestic and foreign companies interested in adding value to Angolan diamonds and creating more jobs in the country.
To prevent the negative environmental impact that diamond mining has on the economy and nature, the Angolan statesman announced the implementation of a programme for its permanent combat.
The underlying idea is to prevent the depletion of this mineral resource by illegal immigrants, as is the case with other producing countries in the region, such as Namibia, Botswana and South Africa.
The programe also includes a process of legalisation and re-organisation of diamond cooperatives, with the purpose of transforming them into semi-industrial diamond exploration companies, said President João Lourenço.
He stressed that these companies should comply with the requirements laid down in the approved regulation, in particular with regard to the rules of exploitation, treatment, environmental protection, marketing, taxes and social support for the community.
On the International market situation, João Lourenço reaffirmed that the Angolan Executive has been following the prevailing situation in the international diamond market, namely the price issue and the emergence of synthetic diamonds.
The Head of State spoke of the signing of the private investment contract of the Cassinga Steel Mining Project, in the province of Huila.
Among other actions, the project provides for the exploration of an iron miner and the construction of a steel production plant in Namibe province, a key element for the metalworking, naval and construction industries.
The President hopes that this project will contribute to the promotion and creation of more jobs, substitution of steel imports, increase of exports and, therefore, the collection of foreign currency for the country.
He stressed that the Executive is aware that the mining sector could contribute much more to the country’s growth and sustainable development and underlined the focus on increasing geological knowledge and training of personnel for the sector.
The forum is a joint organisation of the Ministry of Mineral and Petroleum Resources and the British company AME Trade, Ltd.
More than 400 delegates and 50 exhibitors from 17 countries are attending the event.