Market NewsCommentSA Diamond regulators attack Antwerp beneficiation talk - report

SA Diamond regulators attack Antwerp beneficiation talk - report

At the launch of South Africa’s new State Diamond Trader and also of the new Diamond Regulation organisation last week, Steve Phiri, chairman of the Diamonds and Precious Metals Regulator, said that both he and new diamond regulator CEO Louis Selekane had been “shocked” by talk, at a conference in Antwerp, on how those present could best continue to get unbeneficiated diamonds from Africa, Mining Weekly reported. He said that the conference spurned the concept of adding value to Africa’s diamonds in Africa. Instead, the ‘Dark Continent’ was rejected as having “no expertise and no skills” and as being “so backward”. This attitude prevailed, Phiri said, despite the speeches by so many African leaders, including South Africa’s own Minerals and Energy Minister, Buyelwa Sonjica, on the need for diamonds to be cut and polished in Africa. “We, as the board, have set ourselves goals of being a professionally run organisation, which is fearless in its actions and aggressive in whichever manner is necessary, so as to enforce the policies of government and our ideals,” said Phiri. He praised De Beers for refusing to be threatened by local beneficiation and supporting the concept of adding value in this country. De Beers’ Diamdel, which was being phased out as the State Diamond Trader was phased in, would second personnel for three years.

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