An Exclusive Look into the World’s Most Valuable Diamond Mine

Botswana holds a special place in the hearts of employees here at DLG Naturals. We adore the vibrant culture, kind people, extraordinary wildlife and of course the heavenly food (special shout out to Mountain Valley in Gabane – their braai seasoning is out of this world!) Here we share with you an article that highlights one very important asset to the Botswana government- the Jwaneng diamond mine. This article discusses the economic effects of this mine, the challenges the Botswana government has faced and foresees for the future, and how the government was able to avoid the “resource curse,” that has been so prevalent in other parts of the African continent.

Peter Guest wrote an insightful article for CNN about the complexities that go along with having the world’s most valuable diamond mine. ( December 3, 2015). Below we post the article in its entirety.

Gaborone, Botswana (CNN) Debswana’s Jwaneng mine is a giant cauldron of pale dust, 2 kilometers across at its widest point and patrolled by colossal 300-tonne trucks that labor up the terraced slopes.

The operation, owned as a joint venture between De Beers and the government of Botswana, is the richest diamond mine in the world and, as managing director Albert Milton says, “one of the most important assets in the country.”

Nicknamed “the Prince of Mines”, Jwaneng was opened in 1982, as the diamond trade propelled Botswana from one of the poorest countries on earth to one of Africa’s wealthiest.

The mine’s current production output is about 10.6 million carats per year, or just over 2,100 kilos.

Today, diamonds make up more than 60% of Botswana’s exports, and nearly 25% of its gross domestic product.

Unlike many other countries that are similarly dependent on a single export, Botswana has avoided the “resource curse” of poor governance and slow economic development. By regional standards, its public services are strong, education is free, and corruption is largely in check.

‘Good luck’

An expert inspects Canadian diamonds at De Beers' Sightholder Sales facility in Gaborone, Botswana