By Business Reporter
ZIMBABWE Consolidated Diamond Company (ZCDC) has launched a new diamond trading system that is expected to enhance security and bring transparency in selling of diamonds.
Officially launched by the Minister of Mines and Mining Development Winston Chitando, the new innovation, Zimbabwe Electronic Diamond Trading System (ZEDTS) will see proper accountability in diamond trading.
Speaking on the side lines of the launch, ZCDC Chief Executive Officer Dr Morris Mpofu saw the diamond exchange as “a very important milestone with regards to the diamond industry.”
He acknowledged the country has lost millions of dollars in diamond revenue owing to inefficient marketing and sales systems that were in place, hence the need to innovate diamond transaction processes.
“As ZCDC, we have always been striving for excellence. We have noted that the marketing and sales arrangements for our diamonds, given the systems that we had during the legacy period, needed a total revamp because the country has been losing millions of dollars from the inefficient marketing and sales systems that were in place,” he noted.
The launch of ZEDTS is aimed at ensuring ZCDC optimises its operations to maximise the generation of fiscus revenues and foreign exchanges for the country.
“It is going to bring convenience to the buyers. It is going to remove challenges of the manual systems. It is going to bring out full potential of our diamond sector and we expect that in the next sale the buyers will get used to the system and get encouraged to come to Zimbabwe because we are now implementing international best practices because we are building ZCDC to be a world class producer. We want to be one of the top 5 diamond producers in the world.”
Dr Mpofu described ZEDTS as a game changer in the implementation of the hi-tech processes similar to those in high producing countries like Botswana and Russia.
“This hi-tech centre is going to ensure that we enhance the quality of our diamonds because it is the diamond value management process that improves the quality of diamonds, that brings out the clarity so that the country realises the true and fair value from its diamonds,” he said.
“We then in our business model started implementing, after capitalisation from government last year, an effective diamond value management system which required us to re-orient our marketing, cleaning, evaluation and sorting systems on how we can become internationally relevant, which made us exit the market for 10 months.”
“Diamond value management centre is part of our vision. We have already budgeted for that. We have already started to do the initial processes for the establishment of the centre.”
ZCDC has been conducting diamond sales tenders through the Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe (MMCZ), with the latest tender that closed on 12 September 2018 yielding US$28.3 million from sale of 423,066.43 carat diamonds. ENDS//