Kimberley Process safeguards Namibian Diamonds


The Kimberley Process (KP) will remain as a safeguard for Namibia even as the diamond industry deals with unintended consequences from the second phase of a ban on Russian diamonds by the Group of Seven (G7).

De Beers, the leading diamond company fear the second phase may disrupt prices for diamonds produced in Botswana, South Africa and Namibia.

In December, G7 nations announced a direct ban on Russian diamonds starting in January followed by phased-in restrictions on indirect imports of Russian gems from March.

The Kimberley Process (KP) is a commitment to remove conflict diamonds from the global supply chain.

In the midst of this uncertainty, CEO of Namib Desert Diamonds (Pty) Ltd (Namdia), Alisa Amupolo told Observer Money that ‘Kimberley Process is really our self-guard at the moment.’

She said Namdia will be part of a team with the Ministry of Mines and Energy, when Namibia addresses its concerns with the G7 on the new trade measures.

“There are still analyzing, what we have seen is that there is still a lot of groundwork that needs to be done. What is of concern to us is the efficiency and effectiveness of the new system.”

The new measures by the G7 means Namibia will have to add a new traceability on top of the Kimberley Process, a fact Amupolo said may cause a disruption in the supply chain.

“But so far, we are getting word that the ground work is progressing. As Namibia of course we have to rethink about what other supply alternatives and routes can we capitalize on from a risky management perspective.”

She added that Antwerp in Belgium is a big market for Namdia, with nine clients and the second biggest market is Dubai. Belgium supports the idea of checks in Antwerp, the world’s main diamond hub, according to a report by Reuters.

“But we are monitoring it closely, the Kimberley Process is really our self-guard at the moment. Key for us is that we don’t experience disruption. Us as a supplier we are complying with the Kimberley Process.”

Talking about Namdia’s performance in the 2023/2024 financial year, Amupolo said looking at its top line, Namdia delivered well within the market climate and landscape and conditions.

“You know there were trade embargoes in India for about two months. But if you look at our top line and the focus where we are going to end, I think the impact maybe 20% to 30%, which is also the contraction that we have seen in the market. Maybe from the topline perfective because when we look at the goods, they remained pretty much static. I think that is where the bottom line we can expect to be hit hard,”

In the 2022/2023 financial year, Namdia declared a dividend of N$300 million to the government. In terms of Corporate Social Responsibility, projects in the 2022/2023 financial year, Namdia invested over N$5 million in CSR initiatives aimed at positively impacting local communities and promoting sustainable development.

De Beers has stated that there are questions over how a diamond’s country of origin should be checked and where it should be done.

De Beers had previously urged the G7 to engage Botswana, Namibia, South Africa, Angola and India to develop the framework with input from across the industry, Reuters reported.

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