Angola’s artisanal and semi-industrial diamond mining cooperatives will lose their exploration licenses if they remain inactive for more than six months, the Secretary of State for Geology and Mines, Jânio Correia Victor warned on Tuesday in Luanda.
The warning was given by the director for Geology and Mining Development of Angola’s diamond exploration and sale company, Endiama, Ana Feijó, presenting a report on “The development of the artisanal and semi-industrial mining,” at the 1st Meeting on Semi-Industrial Diamond Activity in Angola.
“Withdrawal of licenses is the solution if the decisions issued by the Ministry are not followed,” said the Secretary of State, adding that, “after the licenses that enable them to mine diamonds have expired, cooperatives have three months to organise and six months to start the activity.”
The report recommends setting up cooperatives in the granted areas within six months of receipt of the exploration license, otherwise the document will be cancelled, and also sets the requirement to send monthly business activity reports to the Office for Semi-Industrial Exploration, as well as adopting measures to eradicate illegal mining and diamond trafficking.
Feijó recalled that as part of “Operation Transparency” launched on 25 September 2018 to combat illegal immigration and diamond smuggling, artisanal and semi-industrial diamond exploration was suspended while it seized 32,000 carats of diamonds, according to the Angop news agency.
Cooperative production between February and October 2019 was 24,766 carats, traded at an average price of US$64.22 per carat, for a total of US$1.7 million, compared with 212,544 carats in 2018 and 465,122 carats in 2017 (Macauhub)