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De Beers and SDT sign pact
De Beers to supply 10% of its diamonds to SDT
By: Diamond World News Service
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Oct 9 2007 12:00AM
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Reference: 1876  

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As per media reports, De Beers is taking concrete steps to better its working relationships with the South African government, and for this, has signed a beneficiation deal with South Africa’s minerals and energy department. Accordingly, it would sell 10% of its diamonds to the State Diamond Trader (SDT), who will supply them to local manufacturers.

At a press briefing, De Beers executive director Barend Petersen said “De Beers is fully supportive of the country's transformation objectives...to broaden access to beneficiation.” According to the Minerals and Energy Minister - Buyela Sonjica, the pact would be sent to the cabinet, before the end of the year. The SDT will begin operations in January 2008, and has yet to determine the criteria for selecting its customers, mentioned its chief executive Abbey Chikane.

In a Reuters report it was mentioned that De Beers expects to produce 14.7 million carats in 2007 and about 12.7 million carats next year, as a result of lost volume from discarded operations.

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