Alweendo calls for balanced stake in benefits derived from diamonds
Mines and Energy Minister, Tom Alweendo urged leaders within the diamond industry to pioneer a new dawn for a better and balanced share of the benefits derived from diamonds.
Alweendo, who was speaking at the 2019 Botswana Diamond Conference held in Gaborone on 5 November, said communities and governments must be total partners in this new dawn – including becoming budding marketeers of diamonds, and telling the story to consumers around the world about the good that diamonds do.
“The conventional model where corporations pay for advertisements is no longer sufficient. Our people- employees and communities- may be better marketeers than the conventional model. However, that will also only materialize when they feel and believe that they too have a stake in the benefits being derived,” Alweendo said.
Alweendo stressed that governments can no longer just rely on the rankings and ratings of how investor-friendly they are, but also looking at retain such investment. He added that governments must accelerate technology development in the industry if they are to succeed in managing the challenges presented by issues such as Lab Grown Diamonds, consumer demand for carbon neutral production, as well as increasing consumer demand for greater evidence of the benefits of diamonds to communities.
“The evidence of the benefits that diamonds have brought to our two countries are overwhelming. We can, however, not rest on our laurels to unlock greater value for our people. It is for this reason that I am delighted to be here and look forward to learning and sharing what more we can do collectively,” Alweendo said.