Diamonds in Angola are once again gleaming, thanks to changes that have re-established production

Diamonds in Angola are once again gleaming, thanks to changes that have re-established production

Experts say Angola is an appealing potential for exploration as diamond prices rise and the industry attempts to address supply gaps.

A little city named Saurimo is located 600 miles east of Luanda, Angola’s capital. Its principal activity has always been agriculture. As a result, visitors may be shocked to see a massive new development on the outskirts with large buildings, a power station, and empty plots of land awaiting new construction.

President Joo Lourenço inaugurated the $77 million Saurimo Diamond Development Hub, which is located on the route leading to the enormous Catoca diamond mine. It symbolizes the country’s efforts to overcome its tumultuous history, which has made it a no-go zone for many miners in the past, and ultimately realize the potential of its vast, mainly untapped diamond reserves.

Following a 10-year absence due to unfavorable business conditions, industry leader De Beers Group recently announced the signing of two mineral investment contracts to resume diamond exploration and mining in Angola.

In a statement, De Beers CEO Bruce Cleaver said, “The signing of these contracts constitutes a key milestone in our new collaboration with Angola.”

“Angola has worked hard in recent years to develop a secure and appealing investment climate, and we are excited to resume active exploration in the country.”

All three diamond majors have announced their comeback to the country. Alrosa, the sector leader, and Rio Tinto, the third largest, are already present in Angola.

“Right now, Angola is perhaps the most promising jurisdiction in the world for diamond exploration and development,” says global diamond analyst Paul Zimnisky. “Many corporations thought it off-limits until recently, so there is a lot of pent-up demand.”

As Western sanctions against Russian diamond miner Alrosa and the Ukraine crises cut off supply, the industry will be scurrying to source more diamonds.

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