HARARE, (Xinhua) --
Zimbabwe is holding talks with the Botswana
government to explore the possibility of it sending its gems to
the neighboring country for cutting and polishing, state
broadcaster ZBC reported on Tuesday.
Mnangagwa revealed this while touring the Diamond Trading
Company of Botswana at the conclusion of his two-day state visit
to Botswana on Tuesday, ZBC reported.
During the tour, the
president said if the talks between the government of Zimbabwe
and Botswana government are successful, Zimbabwe will send its
diamonds to Botswana for cutting and polishing, the ZBC said.
Zimbabwe has been
exporting its gems in raw form due to lack of beneficiation
The country is
planning to resume diamond auctions this month, having suspended
sales in February 2017 after the government in 2016 merged
operations of seven companies that were mining gems in Marange
in the eastern part of Zimbabwe.
The government of
former president Robert Mugabe accused the companies of lack of
transparency and accountability, and of prejudicing the state of
about 15 billion U.S. dollars in potential diamond revenue.
Some of the
companies took the government to court over their forced
eviction from the diamonds fields.
commercial diamond production in Marange in 2010. Over the
years, diamond production at the fields has declined sharply
from 12 million carats in 2012 to 1.8 million carats in 2017,
according to industry figures.
Miners have blamed
dwindling alluvial diamond deposits and lack of technology at
mine conglomerates for the low production.