Harare: The Second Zimbabwe Diamond Conference to take place next month will present the progress made by the country’s diamond industry following its admission as a member of the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) in 2011. The inaugural Zimbabwe Diamond Conference took place at Victoria Falls in November, 2012. The importance to the global diamond industry of the developing Zimbabwe diamond trade is shown by the planned attendance of leading African mines ministers and diamond industry leaders. The conference, organized by Zimbabwe’s Ministry of Mines and Mining Development, in the capital, Harare, will focus on the theme ‘Completing Zimbabwe’s Diamond Potential for the Future’.
African ministers who have confirmed they will take part in the November 6-7 conference include: Ngoako Ramatlhodi, Minister of Mineral Resources of the Republic of South Africa; Isak Katali, Minister of Mines and Energy of the Republic of Namibia; Martin Kabwelulu Labilo, Minister of Mining of the Democratic Republic of Congo; and Bernardo Campos, from Angola, Vice Chair of the Kimberley Process. The conference will be hosted by Zimbabwe’s Minister of Mines and Mining Development, Walter K. Chidakwa, who will address the audience on behalf of his government.
In addition, global diamond industry leaders will deliver keynote speeches at the conference. The speakers are Eli Izhakoff, Honorary President of the WDC, the WFDB and CIBJO; Ernie Blom, President of the World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB); and Gaetano Cavalieri, President of CIBJO. Representatives of leading diamond trading companies, manufacturers, financiers and jewelers will also take part in the conference. Among the other global figures taking part are H.E. Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Executive Chairman, Dubai Multi Commodities Centre Authority; Mr Reuven Kaufman, President, Diamond Dealers’ Club of New York; and Mr Lin Qiang, President, Shanghai Diamond Exchange.
“Zimbabwe is taking its rightful place at the table of the global diamond industry,” said Prof. Francis Gudyanga, Permanent Secretary at Zimbabwe’s Ministry of Mines and Mining Development. “The conference aims to provide an in-depth debate on specific African concerns and to give insights into the huge diamond industry challenges which Zimbabwe faces and which have never before been addressed in an African diamond conference.
“We want to discuss with African and global leaders the issues that we face and how we can develop our diamond industry to the benefit of all. Sophisticated exploration techniques have been developed, but have not been employed in Zimbabwe. If major mining companies seriously explored Zimbabwe’s diamond potential, this would undoubtedly be of great benefit to all participants,” Gudyanga added.