De Beers to set up black-run mining group

De Beers to set up black-run mining group

International diamond producer De Beers is set to join with the South African government to create a regional black-controlled diamond mining company.

The plan involves combining De Beers’ mining operations in the South African region of Namaqualand with the state-run firm Alexkor, the BBC said.

The announcement of the revolutionary firm marks De Beers ongoing efforts to meet black economic empowerment rules, the report said.

Such efforts include the company’s 2006 decision to sell 26 percent of its profitable South African business to a black-owned company.

While De Beers recently reported a 6 percent drop in 2006 rough diamond sales, it predicted an increased demand for diamond jewelry in both India and China.

As part of its efforts in South Africa, the company has also agreed to issue a 20 percent stake in its Namaqualand operations to the regional government.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

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