AWDC Announces African Diamond Conference, May 5-6, in South Africa

Mining and Exploration
04/02/2020 09:55

The Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC), on the margins of the African Mining Indaba in Cape Town, South Africa, yesterday announced it will be organizing its second African Diamond Conference (ADC) in Durban, South Africa, on May 5 & 6. The program and registration details are available here.

Together with its partners – South Africa’s Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) and the African Diamond Producers Association (ADPA) – the AWDC hopes to build on the momentum created at the first ADC held in Brussels in 2017, continuing the dialogue with African diamond-producing countries about critical issues facing the industry as a whole. The key objectives of the conference will be to promote direct and mutually-beneficial relations between African diamond producing countries and the (Belgian) diamond industry, linking capacity building with higher revenues for diamond producing countries, as well as launching initiatives to foster good governance in the diamond industry.

Speaking at the residence of the Ambassador of the Kingdom of Belgium to South Africa, Didier Vanderhasselt, AWDC CEO Ari Epstein commented, “We will be discussing several critical topics such as rough diamond marketing, exploration, beneficiation, artisanal diamond mining and the role of diamond trade centers in the global value chain. We believe constructive dialogue between equal partners is essential as we confront the many challenges facing our industry.”

He added that the AWDC has also “gone beyond just dialogue” in recent years, investing in sustainability projects in the artisanal and small-scale mining sector in Sierra Leone and Guinea. “We are creating a secured mine to market value chain for fair trade and responsibly sourced diamonds originating from certified artisanal mines in Guinea,” he said, noting the confirmation of financial support from the Belgian government for this important sustainability initiative. “With this project, we aim to turn artisanal diamonds into a more sustainable catalyzer for socio-economic development in isolated diamond mining communities.”

The AWDC and its partners are currently finalizing its lineup of participants, which will consist of multiple African mining ministers, leaders of international diamond mining companies, representatives from the leading diamond industry organizations as well as industry analysts.

The schedule is as follows: 

DAY 1 (May 5)
Session 1: Advancing diamond beneficiation in Africa
Session 2: Greenfield diamond exploration

DAY TWO (May 6)
Session 1: Strategies to market natural rough over synthetic diamonds
Session 2: The future of artisanal diamond mining – pathways to international trade
Session 3: The importance of diamond trading centers in the global value chain