Angola: Fifteen diamond projects to begin this year

3 January 2008

Luanda, Angola, 3 Jan – Fifteen diamond mining projects are ready to begin in 2008, which will double the number of diamond mining projects in Angola, according to the annual magazine of the Diamond Industry.

In mid 2007, 14 mining projects were underway in Angola. A further 30 wide-scale prospecting projects are underway. Endiama is also awaiting proposals for investment in 106 projects around the country.

Between 2002 and 2006 production almost doubled – from five million carats to 9.5 million – whilst gross revenue from diamond sales rose to US$1.2 billion last year.

Angola was responsible for 10 percent of the world’s total diamond sales last year, according to figures from Sociedade de Comercialização de Diamantes de Angola (Sodiam).

The country was the fifth biggest seller of diamonds, after Russia, Botswana, Canada and South Africa. In total the world’s diamond mines posted gross revenues of US$12.4 billion.

Over half of Angola’s diamonds were sold in Dubai and Antwerp. Hong Kong bought 19 percent of all diamonds and Geneva purchased 10 percent and Tel Aviv 7 percent.

The Luanda diamond cutting factory kept 4 percent of the total number of diamonds sold last year.

With production rising by an average of 30 percent per year since 2006, by 2009 Angola should have annual production of 19 million carats. At current prices, this amount would result in sales of US$2.4 billion, or double last year’s sales. (macauhub)