Diamond output up 500 percent

16 Oct, 2016 - 02:10 0 Views
Diamond output up 500 percent

The Sunday Mail

Kuda Bwititi Chief Reporter
The Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company has increased production in Chiadzwa by 500 percent, a clear sign of the gem-rich fields’ huge potential. ZCDC began mining in 2015 following amalgamation of Marange Resources, Diamond Mining Corporation and the Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation.
Government reasoned that one company would increase output significantly while improving transparency.

Miners like Mbada Diamonds, Anjin, Jinan, Gye Nyame and Kusena had their licenses to mine in Chiadzwa cancelled as part of the consolidation process.

Mbada, Anjin and Jinan took the matter to court and their mines remain idle.
Mines and Mining Development Minister Walter Chidhakwa told The Sunday Mail that Marange had upped its monthly production from 10 000 to 50 000 carats, while DMC has almost doubled its output.

“The figures from the portals where we are mining at Marange Resources and DMC mines have been encouraging and they have given us hope that there is still huge potential in Chiadzwa.

“At Marange Resources, we were producing about 10 000 carats per month, but the figure has now shot up to between 45 000 to 50 000 carats. At DMC, production used to be around 25 000 carats, but it is now about 45 000.”

He added: “We have acquired new equipment for Marange Resources, and it has been very useful. Our geologists have also been working hard adopting new strategies to identify the ‘sweet areas’ to mine.

“Basically, the strategy has been to focus on expanding exploration to identify the best areas to mine. The strategy on the DMC mine has been to increase the working hours because previously they had fewer working days.”
Minister Chidhakwa said ZCDC was developing the Gye Nyame and Kusena claims, with production set to resume soon.

He said Government was close to an agreement with DTZ-OZGEO for ZCDC to take over diamond deposits in Chimanimani.
“We are also having cordial talks with the Russians (DTZ-OZGEO) and they have given a value of what they put into the mine. We have generally agreed to pay them off and the plan we have is to settle that obligation through revenue that is generated once we start mining in that area.”

In 2015, Government raked in US$157 million from Marange.
When Zimbabwe’s diamond sector was at its peak in 2012, projections were that annual production could pass 16 million carats.
Minister Chidhakwa reckons Zimbabwe could earn between US$25 billion and US$30 billion from diamonds over the next decade.

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