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Mozambique is joining an international certification process aimed at establishing the origin of diamonds and avoiding the transaction of precious stones from conflict areas, Deputy Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy Sousa Fernando has announced.
“We are joining the Kimberley Process certification scheme, to certify that [the stones] are not blood diamonds,” Sousa Fernando told journalists in Maputo on Wednesday at the opening Mozambique’s largest exhibition of precious stones, Expogema.
Three years ago, mining company Mustang Resources announced the discovery in Mozambique of the first deposit of marketable diamonds, while further research in 2016 discovered the existence of diamonds in the Massagena district of Gaza province, southern Mozambique.
The north of the Save river region has a lot of artisanal mining, also known as ‘garimpo’, and the sales are made informally, but certification could allow the creation of safe, regulated jobs, Fernando said.
In addition to diamond certification, the government intends to set up commercial precious stone warehouses in Maputo and Nacala to hold stakeholders accountable for transactions and to sell through a single channel.
The Kimberley Process Certification Scheme is an international governmental certification programme that was set up to prevent the funding of conflict through trade in diamonds. Established in January 2003, the scheme requires governments to certify that shipments of rough diamonds are free from blood diamonds – diamonds from conflict zones.
Countries that participate must pass legislation to enforce the Kimberley Process and set up control systems for the import and export of rough diamonds.
According to the Kimberley Process official website, Mozambique is currently a candidate to joining the organisation.
Source: Lusa / kimberleyprocess.com