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Botswana registered a trade surplus of over P1 million

The International Merchandise Trade Statistics 2019 monthly report indicates that Botswana’s total exports amounted to P5.6 Million, resulting in a decrease of 6.8% compared to the revised May 2019 value of P6.045.5 Million. Imports were valued at over P4 Million, showing a decline of 29.6% from the revised May 2019 value of P6 Million.

Imports are valued cost, insurance and freight, which includes the cost of the commodity plus insurance and freight charges, but excludes customs or any other duty paid on arrival. Having imports valued at over P4 million and showing a decline of over P1 Million, the decrease was mainly attributed to the decline in diamonds imports, having declined by 68%, P1,6 Million, from P2.3 Million in May 2019, to P749.9 Million during June 2019. This decline in diamonds exports contributed 82.1% points to the total imports decline.

Vehicles and transport equipment imports also went down by 51.3%, which is P404.5 Million from P788.2 Million in May 2019 to P383.7 Million during the month under review. Metals and metal products and machinery and electrical equipment imports recorded increases from May to June 2019. Metals and metal products went up by 38.3% (P121 Million), from P316 Million to P437 Million while machinery and electrical equipment rose by 9%, or P62 Million from P693 recorded to P755 Million. The contribution of commodities that recorded increases were not enough to offset the negative contributions made by those that recorded decreases, thus an overall decline in imports value during the current period.

Comparison of imports value for June 2019 and June 2018 shows a decrease of 27%, P1.7 Million from P6.3 Million recorded in June 2018 to P5 Million registered in June 2019. The decrease in total imports was mainly as a result of diamonds imports, which decreased from P2.726.4 Million during June 2018 to P749.9 Million in June 2019. Textiles and footwear also contributed to the decrease, dropped from P126.9 Million during June 2018 to P98.8 Million in June 2019.

During June 2019, Botswana’s total exports amounted to P5.6 Million, resulting in a decrease of 6.8 percent, P408.7 Million, compared to the revised May 2019 value of P6 Million. The decrease is associated with a fall of 7.4 percent (P409 Million) in diamonds exports during June 2019 compared to the value recorded for the previous month. Comparison of total  exports value for June 2019 and June 2018 shows a fall of 17%, which is equivalent to P1.1 Million from P6.8 Million recorded in June 2018 to P5.6 Million currently.

The decline in total exports was a result of diamonds exports, which decreased by 18%, or P1.1 Million, from P6.2 Million during June 2018 to P5.1 Million during the current period. Meat and meat products also registered a decrease of 29%, which equals P40 Million from P141 Million to P101 Million. Botswana registered a trade surplus of P1, 0004.0 Million during June 2019. The country received total imports amounting to P4.6 Million during June 2019.

Machinery and electrical equipment and diamonds contributed the most to total imports 16.3%, or P755.8 million and 16.2% P749 Million respectively. These groups were followed by fuel with 14.2% which is P658 Million and food, beverages and tobacco with 14.1%, P651 Million. Chemicals and rubber products contributed 10.6% or P490.8 Million to total imports during the month under review. Total exports for June 2019 were valued at P5.6 Million, with 91.3% (P5.1 Million) attributed to diamonds. Machinery and electrical equipment and meat and meat products exports contributed 2.3% or P128 Million and 1.8%, P101 Million respectively, to total exports during the period under review.

Botswana received imports worth P4.6 Million during June 2019, with 71.6% or P3.3 Million sourced from Southern African Customs Union SACU. The top most imported commodity group from the SACU region was food, beverages and tobacco, with a contribution of 18.6% which is P617 Million, followed by fuel with 18.3% or P605 Millions of total imports from the region. Machinery and electrical equipment and chemicals and rubber products made contributions of 15.5% or P515 Million and 11.9% percent, P394 Million respectively to total imports from SACU during June 2019.

Within the SACU region, South Africa was the largest source of imports, with a contribution of 70.3%, P3,2 Million to total imports during the month under review. Food, beverages and tobacco and fuel were the top most imported commodities from South Africa with a contribution of 18.4%, P600.6 Million and 17.9%, P582 Million, respectively to total imports from that country.

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NAMDEB extends life of mine for land operations by up to 20 years

19th October 2021

Joint venture between De Beers and Government of Republic of Namibia announces new plan, supporting economic, commercial, employment and community benefit, following receipt of royalty relief Namdeb Diamond Corporation (Proprietary) Limited (‘Namdeb’), a 50:50 joint venture between De Beers Group and the Government of the Republic of Namibia, today announced the approval of a new long-term business plan that will extend the current life of mine for Namibia’s land-based operations as far as 2042.

Under the previous business plan, the land-based Namdeb operations would have come to the end of their life at the end of 2022 due to unsustainable economics. However, a series of positive engagements between the Namdeb management team and the Government of the Republic of Namibia has enabled the creation of a mutually beneficial new business plan that extends the life of mine by up to 20 years, delivering positive outcomes for the Namibian economy, the Namdeb business, employees, community partners and the wider diamond industry.

As part of the plan, the Government of the Republic of Namibia has offered Namdeb royalty relief from 2021 to 2025, with the royalty rate during this period reducing from 10% to 5%. This royalty relief has in turn underpinned an economically sustainable future for Namdeb via a life of mine extension that, through the additional taxes, dividends and royalties from the extended life of mine, is forecast to generate an additional fiscal contribution for Namibia of approximately N$40 billion. Meanwhile, the life of mine extension will also deliver ongoing employment for Namdeb’s existing employees, the creation of 600 additional jobs, ongoing benefits for community partners and approximately eight million carats of additional high value production.

Bruce Cleaver, CEO, De Beers Group, said: “Namdeb, a shining example of partnership, has a proud and unique place in Namibia’s economic history. This new business plan, forged by Namdeb management and enabled by the willingness of Government to find a solution in the best interest of Namibia, means that Namdeb’s future is now secure and the company is positioned to continue making a significant contribution to the Namibian economy, the socio-economic development of the Oranjemund community and the lives of Namdeb employees.” Hon. Tom Alweendo, Minister of Mines and Energy for the Government of the Republic of Namibia, said: “Mining remains the backbone of our economy and is one of the largest employment sectors within our country.

Government understood the fundamental impact of what the Namdeb mine closure at the end of 2022 would have had on Namibia. Therefore, it was imperative to safeguard this operation for the benefit of sustaining the life of mine for both the national economy as well as preserving employment for our people and the livelihoods of families that depend on it.”

Riaan Burger, CEO, Namdeb Diamond Corporation, said: “After more than a century of production, these operations were approaching the end of their life, but the creation of this new business plan means we can continue to deliver for Namibia for many years into the future. This is great news for the hardworking women and men of Namdeb, as well as for all our community partners who we are proud to have worked with over the years. We now look forward to starting a new chapter in Namdeb’s proud history.”

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Botswana records first trade surplus since January

7th October 2021

Botswana has recorded its first trade surplus for 2021 since the only one for the year in January.

The country’s exports for the month of July surpassed the value of imports, Statistics Botswana’s July International Merchandise Trade data reveals.

Released last Friday, the monthly trade digest reports a positive jump in the trade balance graph against the backdrop of a series of trade deficits in the preceding months since January this year.

According to the country’s significant data body, imports for the month were valued at P7.232 billion, reflecting a decline of 6.6 percent from the revised June 2021 value of P7.739 billion.

Total exports during the same month amounted to P7.605 billion, showing an increase of 6.1 percent over the revised June 2021 value of P7.170 billion.

A trade surplus of P373.2 million was recorded in July 2021. This follows a revised trade deficit of P568.7 million for June 2021.

For the total exports value of P7.605 billion, the Diamonds group accounted for 91.2 percent (P6.936 billion), followed by Machinery & Electrical Equipment and Salt & Soda Ash with 2.2 percent (P169.7 million) and 1.3 percent (P100.9 million) respectively.

Asia was the leading destination for Botswana exports, receiving 65.2 percent (P4.96 billion) of total exports during July 2021.

These exports mostly went to the UAE and India, having received 26.3 percent (P1. 99 billion) and 18.7 percent (P1.422 billion) of total exports, respectively. The top most exported commodity to the regional block was Diamonds.

Exports destined to the European Union amounted to P1.64 billion, accounting for 21.6 percent of total exports.

Belgium received almost all exports destined to the regional union, acquiring 21.5 percent (P1.6337 billion) of total exports during the reporting period.

The Diamonds group was the leading commodity group exported to the EU. The SACU region received exports valued at P790.7 million, representing 10.4 percent of total exports.

Diamonds and Salt & Soda Ash commodity groups accounted for 37.8 percent (P298.6 million) and 6.2 percent (P48.7 million) of total exports to the customs union.

South Africa received 9.8 percent (P745.0 million) of total exports during the month under review. The Diamonds group contributed 39.9 percent (P297.4 million) to all goods destined for the country.


In terms of imports, the SACU region contributed 62.7 percent (P4.534 billion) to total imports during July.

The topmost imported commodity groups from the SACU region were Fuel; Food, Beverages & Tobacco, and Machinery & Electrical Equipment with contributions of 33.3 percent (P1.510 billion), 17.4 percent (P789.4 million) and 12.7 percent (P576.7 million) to total imports from the region, respectively.

South Africa contributed 60.1 percent (P4.3497 billion) to total imports during July 2021.

Fuel accounted for 32.1 percent (P1.394 billion) of imports from that country. Food, Beverages & Tobacco contributed 17.7 percent (P772.0 million) to imports from South Africa.

Namibia contributed 2.0 percent (P141.1 million) to the overall imports during the period under review. Fuel was the main commodity imported from that country at 82.1 percent (P115.8 million).

During the months, imports representing 63.5 percent (P4.5904 billion) were transported into the country by Road.

Transportation of imports by Rail and Air accounted for 22.7 percent (P1.645 billion) and 13.8 percent (P996.2 million), respectively.

During the month, goods exported by Air amounted to P6, 999.2 million, accounting for 92.0 percent of total exports, while those leaving the country by Road were valued at P594.2 million (7.8 percent).

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The 2021/2022 Stanford Seed Transformation Program Begins

7th October 2021

Founders from twenty companies have been accepted into the program from Botswana, Namibia, and South Africa

The 4th Cohort of the Stanford Seed Transformation Program – Southern Africa (STP), a collaboration between Stanford Graduate School of Business and De Beers Group commenced classes on 20 September 2021. According to Otsile Mabeo, Vice President Corporate Affairs, De Beers Global Sightholder Sales: “We are excited to confirm that 20 companies have been accepted into the 4th Seed Transformation Programme from Botswana, Namibia, and South Africa. The STP is an important part of the De Beers Group Building Forever sustainability strategy and demonstrates our commitment to the ‘Partnering for Thriving Communities’ pillar that aims at enhancing enterprise development in countries where we operate in the Southern African region”. Jeffrey Prickett, Global Director of Stanford Seed: “Business owners and their key management team members undertake a 12-month intensive leadership program that includes sessions on strategy and finance, business ethics, and design thinking, all taught by world-renowned Stanford faculty and local business practitioners. The program is exclusively for business owners and teams of for-profit companies or for-profit social enterprises with annual company revenues of US$300,000 – US$15million.” The programme will be delivered fully virtually to comply with COVID 19 protocols. Out of the 20 companies, 6 are from Botswana, 1 Namibia, and 13 South Africa. Since the partnership’s inception, De Beers Group and Stanford Seed have supported 74 companies, 89 founders/CEOs, and approximately 750 senior-level managers to undertake the program in Southern Africa.

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