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Botswana and diamond giants, De Beers, mute on ongoing production negotiations

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The Botswana government and diamonds major, De Beers Group, have refused to disclose details of the ongoing production and sales agreement negotiations between the two, reports on Friday, 8 November 2019, claim.

Fielding questions from the media on Thursday night, 7 November 2019, De Beers chief executive, Bruce Cleaver, said a disclosure would only be made once the two parties have signed all the agreed terms.

According to Cleaver, the negotiating parties, comprising the De Beers executive team and senior government officials, are working towards reaching common ground that would be fair to both parties.

Permanent secretary in the Ministry of Mineral Resources, Green Technology and Energy Security, Mmetla Masire, also declined to shed details about the negotiations, insisting that they were confidential.

“Let me hasten to add that although certain aspects of the agreement might remain confidential even after signing, it will be structured in such a way that it is open and fair to all parties,” he said.

De Beers Group Botswana resident director, Neo Moroka, echoed the same sentiments that negotiations details were confined to the two parties and just waiting for approval.

Opposition parties have raised the red flag over the secrecy with which the negotiations are being held and have called on the Botswana government and De Beers to disclose details of the talks to members of the public.

– APA

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