Angola plans new diamond exchange in 2021

Endiama De Beers tower (left foreground) in Luanda, Angola. Credit: iStock/mtcurado

The government of Angola says it has identified key steps that it needs to take before launching its own diamond exchange in Luanda, which is slated to open by the end of 2021.

Mining and oil minister Diamantino Azevedo announced on Nov. 2 that its office is working to set up a gemological academy and a technological research centre within the same free-trade zone as the Angolan Diamond Bourse (ADB), African Intelligence reported.

Angola, the world’s fifth diamond producer by value and sixth by volume, appointed in June Belgian expert Peter Meeus as an adviser. The former chief of HRD Antwerp, Europe’s leading authority on the grading of diamonds, is assisting authorities with the creation of a diamond hub to streamline sales and marketing of the rough the country produces.

Minister Azevedo says having trade centre within the country will enable the entire flow and marketing of Angolan diamonds to be monitored through a single channel.

Changing industry

Angola’s diamond industry, which emerged a century ago under Portuguese colonial rule, is successfully being liberalized.

Last year, the country held its first public diamond auction and since then, producers no longer have to sell at below-market prices to a handful of buyers favoured by the state.

The national diamond company, Endiama, recently revealed it was seeking international partners in an attempt to place Angola among the world’s top-three diamond producers and diversify the economy away from oil.

Angola expects to produce 8 million carats of diamonds this year, two million short of the original targets set by Endiama, because of disruptions caused by Covid-19.

— This article first appeared in MINING.com, part of Glacier Resource Innovation Group.

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