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Ministry of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources (MMEWR)
Minister leaves for Switzerland and Belgium
19/08/10
Minister leaves for Geneva, Switzerland on the 22nd August 2010 on an official visit to tour Richold’s high technology manufacturing operations. Richold is the only Swiss company which is a De Beers DTC sightholder worldwide. The company manufactures diamonds of all sizes for the Swiss watch market.

The Honourable Minister of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources, Dr P.H.K. Kedikilwe leaves for Geneva, Switzerland on the 22nd August 2010 on an official visit to tour Richold’s high technology manufacturing operations. Richold is the only Swiss company which is a De Beers DTC sightholder worldwide. The company manufactures diamonds of all sizes for the Swiss watch market.

 

The main aim of the visit is to explore investment opportunities in the diamond sector with a view to attract investment in order to further diversify Botswana’s economy and expand potential revenue sources and explore the potential of promoting downstream diamond activities beyond mining.

 

As part of efforts to transform the country into a fully integrated Diamond Centre, visiting the Richold operations will give the Honourable Minister an opportunity to appreciate the investment opportunities presented by this project.

 

From Geneva, the Minister travels to Antiwerp, Belgium to visit the Diamond Centre and selected diamond operations in Belgium. He will exchange views with members of the Diamond Council and further explore cooperation between Botswana and Belgium on diamonds to aid Botswana’s commitment to diamond value addition. Botswana wants to create a trading platform in aid of transforming the country into a trading centre. Some of the plans include the moving of aggregation from London to Gaborone. In this regard the Diamond Security Transfer facility project at the Sir Seretse Khama Airport has been completed.  

 

 

The trading platform is to attract Diamond Trading Companies and in other cases producers that are currently selling their diamonds in other centres to re-locate to Botswana and to encourage their customers to come to Botswana to buy diamonds. This is envisaged to boost air traffic as well as the hospitality industry (hotels, restaurants etc) as well as tourism. Potential investment would translate into employment opportunities and technology transfer to enable Batswana to participate in manufacturing.

Minister Kedikilwe is expected back home on the 28th August 2010.

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