In 2018, just months after taking office, President Lourenço visited Antwerp, Belgium, the world’s largest, most important diamond trade hub. Acknowledging hardly any of Angola’s rough diamonds were traded directly on the Antwerp market for decades, Lourenço repeated his ambition to reform the Angolan diamond industry and collaborate closely with Antwerp, widely considered the most powerful and transparent trade hub in the world.
The Angolan administration lives up to its commitment, and a series of reforms has been put in motion to create a more transparent and sustainable diamond industry in Angola, important and necessary steps to allow Angola to maximize revenue for its precious resources and further develop the country’s promising diamond reserves. The two-day visit of Antwerp-based traders, specialist manufacturers, miners, tender houses and boiling experts marks a next step in the Angolan-Antwerp partnership.
Chaim Pluczenik, President of the Antwerp World Diamond Centre; “As the world’s largest and most transparent diamond trade hub, Antwerp is fully aligned with President Lourenço’s reforms to increase transparency but also to create added value for the diamond industry here in Angola.” 86% of the world’s rough diamonds are traded in Antwerp making the city the global leader in rough diamond trade. “Producers across the globe bring their rough diamonds to Antwerp first, because we can guarantee maximum revenue and true market value, yet barely 10% of Angola’s rough diamonds find their way to the Antwerp’s open market today. We are here to talk about how Antwerp can contribute and ensure Angola reaps the full benefits of this precious resource in full transparency, and what we can do to support Angola, by sharing our knowledge, expertise and network, to build a sustainable diamond industry from the huge potential it holds.”
In a packed program, the Antwerp delegation members met with the Honorable Minister for Mineral Resources, Azevedo as well as with Endiama and Sodiam Presidents Ganga Jr. and Bravo da Rosa and other Angolan industry stakeholders, engaging in one-on-one business meetings during formal and informal meetings throughout the two-day visit. On Tuesday morning, the delegation paid a visit to the Saurimo development site, where the government, together with Endiama, Sodiam and private stakeholders are building a diamond hub that focuses on training and education and local, sustainable beneficiation initiatives.