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Raw Materials

Government warns of illegal diamond exploration that puts sales abroad at risk

The Government said that illegal diamond exploration in the country could put the commercialization of Angolan diamonds in Europe and America at risk, justifying the need to criminalize “garimpeiros”.

: Tommy Trenchard
Tommy Trenchard  

The Secretary of State for Mineral Resources, Jânio Correia Vítor, justified the need to criminalize illegal diamond mining in the country, as the practice is internationally associated with human rights violations.

"We could run the risk, if we continue with this practice, of not selling our diamonds in Europe and America due to the violation of human rights, so we have to be a little careful about that," he declared.

Speaking to deputies in the parliament plenary, during the discussion of the proposed Law to Combat Illegal Mining Activity, Correia Vítor clarified that the law, approved in general this Thursday, does not aim to criminalize the citizen, but those involved in the exploration chain. illicit diamonds.

According to Jânio Correia Vítor, the illegal exploitation of diamonds "is feeding more people from outside and not local communities", which "does not respond to the executive's policies for the inclusion of communities according to semi-industrial activity".

For the person responsible, the legal diploma must help the judicial authorities to better clarify the crimes and hold the true perpetrators of the mining accountable, considering that the law "must be better suited to the reality of justice and the discovery of the material truth in these crimes".

At least 120 artisanal diamond cooperatives, supervised by Angolan citizens, are active in Angola, after having their titles renewed, with the remaining 140 being inoperative due to lack of investment.

The Ministry of Mineral Resources, Oil and Gas is developing actions together with the National Diamond Company of Angola (ENDIAMA) to group inoperative cooperatives and attract investors, said the official.

Jânio Correia Vítor regretted, however, that some artisanal diamond cooperatives resort to illegal mining, due to the lack of legally authorized mining means.

"So, they opted for mining, this mining brings a series of problems, especially social problems, such as illegal immigration, environmental degradation, the spread of ravines, mainly in the east zone", he stressed.

The Secretary of State stated that the diamond subsector has a contribution to the country's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) that varies from 0.5 to 0.7 percent and that a total of 77.3 billion euros were collected from taxes. kwanzas in 2023.


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