Botswana Is Poised To Become A Major Global Diamond Hub

Botswana Is Poised To Become A Major Global Diamond Hub

From BBC

After decades of just mining rough diamonds, Botswana’s capital Gaborone now cuts, polishes and sells the precious stones itself.

Most people may be unable to find Gaborone on a map, but it’s becoming a regular destination for global diamond traders and that’s changing the economy here.

This dusty, low-rise city is being transformed, as high-rise flats and hotels are constructed and businesses bet it will mean a boost for them.

Diamond-related companies are setting up factories in anticipation of the global mining giant De Beers relocating its sales business here from London.

Soon, $6bn (£4bn) worth of diamond trades will take place here, attracting buyers from around the world.

‘Made sense’

A local company has already held an auction. A new diamond park has been built to host spin-off businesses.

One of them – a branch of an Indian firm called Shrenuj – has recently opened and is making jewellery partly using Botswana’s diamonds.

Dozens of people, mainly young women, are hunched over small workstations, peering through magnifying glasses as they shape, smooth and carve various bits of metal and stone into shiny jewellery.

“We can source rough diamonds in Botswana,” the manager, Kim Lenni, says. “It made sense for us to open a jewellery factory. We’re able to supply the local market and the US from Botswana.”

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