JOHANNESBURG – Botswana wants more local benefit before it signs another diamond deal with De Beers.
The current deal expires in 2020, and President Mokgweetsi Masisi wants more diamonds cut and polished in the country before they leave its borders.
Both parties have fair weight on the negotiation table.
Diamonds are a critical part of Botswana’s GDP and foreign exchange earnings, while more than 60-percent of De Beers’ diamonds come from that country.
Botswana is the world’s 2nd-biggest diamond producer, and most of its gems are mined by Debswana, a 50-50 joint venture between the government and De Beers.
Anglo-American owns 85-percent of De Beers, with Botswana’s government holding the rest.