Botswana on De Beers: "We Want More and We'll Get More"

By John Jeffay / March 12, 2023 / / Article Link

(IDEX Online) - Botswana's President Mokgweetsi Masisi said it was "only logical" that his country should want more and get more from its deal with De Beers.He ramped up the rhetoric in his latest comments on the 54-year-old joint venture agreement, under which three quarters of its rough is currently sold by De Beers."Besides the fact that the diamonds are ours, it doesn't make sense for us to continue to relegate ourselves to participating in the rough space only," he said, according to a Reuters report."So, it's only logical that we want more and we are going to get more. But through negotiation."  President Masisi (pictured) threatened last month to walk away from the deal unless he got more of the revenue.The original agreement was that De Beers would sell 90 per cent of the country's diamonds and state-run Okavango Diamond Company would sell the remaining 10 per cent. In 2020 the split was adjusted to 75-25.Both sides have been unable to reach agreement on a new deal and have extended the existing deal until 30 June this year.Shortly before Bruce Cleaver stepped down as De Beers CEO last month he said: "I am very confident that this is a win-win situation because Botswana takes 80 cents in every dollar we make, and we take 20 of the generated money."

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