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'Game Changer' in Business: Zimbabwe's Largest Diamond Producer Shifts Sales to Dubai

© Sputnik . Ilya Pitalev / Go to the mediabankSeveral diamonds of Alrosa company on the show
Several diamonds of Alrosa company on the show - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 21.10.2023
Zimbabwe is a major contributor to the global mining industry, and its mineral resources include diamonds, platinum, chrome, coal, gold, and other minerals. In 2022, the country was the world's seventh largest producer of diamonds, accounting for 3% of global production.
Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Co. (ZCDC), the largest diamond miner in the country, has shifted nearly all of its sales to Dubai auctions in order to directly reach out to cutters, polishers, and traders, while eliminating the participation of intermediaries, media has reported.
The state-owned mining company has auctioned four million carats of gemstones in the emirate this year, which is a significant increase from the total of 850,000 carats sold in 2022. The company's goal, according to Sales and Marketing Manager Enock Moyo, is to generate $1 billion in revenue by 2030.
"For us, Dubai has been a game changer," Moyo is quoted as saying.
The company's marketing manager told media that three auctions conducted in Dubai managed to attract an average of about 150 buyers, at least five times the number for sales in Zimbabwe. He further elaborated that the sale of high quality diamonds has also been a significant factor.
Moyo added that the auctioning of uncut diamonds in the United Arab Emirates has eradicated the intermediaries that were previously involved in auctions held in the Southern African nation.
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The shift towards sales in Dubai is taking place amidst a worldwide decline in diamond prices. India, the biggest consumer of diamond raw materials in the industry, has reportedly urged the major producers to scale back supplies.
Diamond prices have been declining globally since spring 2022, when the IDEX diamond price index peaked at 158.4. The decrease is attributed to weak demand for precious stones, particularly in the US market. Being the largest consumer of diamond jewelry, the United States accounts for 40-45% of global demand, according to experts.
However, the Zimbabwean producer anticipates a significant rise in gem prices by the beginning of next year. The company, based in the eastern district of Marange, aims to increase output to 5.3 million carats this year, up from 4.3 million in 2022.
In late 2019, Russian diamond miner Alrosa and ZCDC formed a joint venture to explore new diamond deposits in the African country. Alrosa has a 70% stake in the joint venture, while ZCDC owns the remaining 30%. Alrosa has invested approximately $15 million and is currently conducting geological exploration at 40 sites across Zimbabwe in cooperation with ZCDC.
The UAE ranks as Zimbabwe's third-largest export destination, following South Africa and China. It purchases the majority of the nation's gold and is the second-largest purchaser of tobacco.