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BOD finally gets Marange Diamonds Fields

Botswana Diamonds, the Botswana Stock Exchange and London Stock Exchange, has concluded an agreement with another London listed entity, Vast Resources, for the development of their concessions in the prolific but controversial Marange Diamond Fields (MDF) of eastern Zimbabwe.

The Marange diamond fields, considered the largest find in the world, have been marred in controversies ranging from environment degradation, looting and human rights abuses. The international community stopped short of labeling the Marange diamonds blood or conflict diamonds. In 2008 the Human Rights Watch found out that there was used of forced child labour by armed forces at Marange while during the same year 200 people from the Chiadzwa died at the hands of armed forced.

In a previous interview with BusinessPost, BOD Managing Director James Campbell said that even though he is aware that Vast Resources is treading into Zimbabwe’s controversial fields, he is unperturbed. Campbell explained that this is because he trusts the new regime under Zimbabwe President Emerson Mnangagwa.

Vast is a mining and resource development company. A separate agreement will cover the joint development of diamond properties outside of the MDF, which will be a straightforward 50/50 joint venture, though the initial focus of the joint work is on Marange joint. 

In a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed in May 2018, which has now matured into an agreement on the Marange fields, including:  A Special Purpose Vehicle (‘SPV’) between BOD and Vast to develop diamond resources in the MDF; Initial shareholdings will be BOD – 13.33% and Vast – 86.67%; Vast will contribute up to US$1 million as initial funding; If any additional funds are required, this will be via an equity raise; and BOD and Vast may contribute to any future equity raise on a pro rata basis. If either party does not take up its allocation, the other may. Further announcements will be made as appropriate.

BOD has revealed that its next step is a desktop review, which is now underway and esults will be announced shortly.  “I am delighted that we have concluded terms with Vast on developing their concessions within the prolific Marange Diamond Fields. We look forward to working with them to realise the full potential of this prospective area and others, as they emerge, with Zimbabwe opening up further for two businesses. Work on the initial due diligence is far advanced and we look forward to providing further updates to the market in due course,” said BOD Chairman John Teeling.

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China’s GDP expands 3% in 2022 despite various pressures

2nd February 2023
China’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) expanded by 3% year-on-year to 121.02 trillion yuan ($17.93 trillion) in 2022 despite being mired in various growth pressures, according to data from the National Bureau Statistics.

The annual growth rate beat a median economist forecast of 2.8% as polled by Reuters. The country’s fourth-quarter GDP growth of 2.9% also surpassed expectations for a 1.8% increase.

In 2022, the Chinese economy encountered more difficulties and challenges than was expected amid a complex domestic and international situation. However, NBS said economic growth stabilized after various measures were taken to shore up growth.

Industrial output rose 3.6% in 2022 over the previous year, while retail sales slightly shrank by 0.2% data show that fixed-asset investment increased 5.1% over 2021, with a 9.1% hike in manufacturing investment but a 10% fall in property investment.

China created 12.06 million new jobs in urban regions throughout the year, surpassing its annual target of 11 million, and officials have stressed the importance of continuing an employment-first policy in 2023.

Meanwhile, China tourism market is a step closer to robust recovery. Tourism operators are in high spirits because the market saw a good chance of a robust recovery during the Spring Festival holiday amid relaxed COVID-19 travel policies.

On January 27, the last day of the seven-day break, the Ministry of Culture and Tourism published an encouraging performance report of the tourism market. It said that domestic destinations and attractions received 308 million visits, up 23.1% year-on-year. The number is roughly 88.6% of that in 2019, they year before the pandemic hit.

According to the report, tourism-related revenue generated during the seven-day period was about 375.8 billion yuan ($55.41 billion), a year-on-year rise of 30%. The revenue was about 73% of that in 2019, the Ministry said.

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Jewellery manufacturing plant to create over 100 jobs

30th January 2023

The state of the art jewellery manufacturing plant that has been set up by international diamond and cutting company, KGK Diamonds Botswana will create over 100 jobs, of which 89 percent will be localized.

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Investors inject capital into Tsodilo Resources Company

25th January 2023

Local diamond and metal exploration company Tsodilo Resources Limited has negotiated a non-brokered private placement of 2,200, 914 units of the company at a price per unit of 0.20 US Dollars, which will provide gross proceeds to the company in the amount of C$440, 188. 20.

According to a statement from the group, proceeds from the private placement will be used for the betterment of the Xaudum iron formation project in Botswana and general corporate purposes.

The statement says every unit of the company will consist of a common share in the capital of the company and one Common Share purchase warrant of the company.

Each warrant will enable a holder to make a single purchase for the period of 24 months at an amount of $0.20. As per regularity requirements, the group indicates that the common shares and warrants will be subject to a four month plus a day hold period from date of closure.

Tsodilo is exempt from the formal valuation and minority shareholder approval requirements. This is for the reason that the fair market value of the private placement, insofar as it involves the director, is not more than 25% of the company’s market capitalization.

Tsodilo Resources Limited is an international diamond and metals exploration company engaged in the search for economic diamond and metal deposits at its Bosoto Limited and Gcwihaba Resources projects in Botswana.  The company has a 100% stake in Bosoto which holds the BK16 kimberlite project in the Orapa Kimberlite Field (OKF) in Botswana.

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