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DeBeers records positive H1

A few months after announcing their appreciation of synthetic diamonds, De Beers Group of companies has announced a positive 6 months period in their half year interim results.

Having registered a 4 percent sales volume price increase― a notable $162/carat compared to 2017’s $ 156/carat, the Executive Vice President, Paul Rowley noted that the 1.6 percent increase relates to a positive continuation from 2017. He has highlighted that the ability of the Diamond Company to make significant positive changes even through the phase of the Dollar weakening was mitigated by their high production.  

Rowley has in the results highlighted that their solid financial performance in the first half of 2018 reflects a strong market presence which is supported by continued focus on enhanced operations performance. Having registered a significant 8 percent of diamond production amounting to 17.5 million carats when compared to the same period of 2017, the group has recorded a strong diamond demand for the elapsed 2018 period with the total overall demand at US$ 82 billion.

In their overall financial and operational overview, underlying Earnings Before Interests, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization (EBITDA) registered a 9 percent decrease to $ 712 million from $786 million in the same period of 2017, a registered $74 million difference. Even with that the results indicate that the unfavorable exchange rate movements and higher proportion of waste mining costs which are considered a once off occurrence have also been mitigated by the high production. They further highlight that the underlying EBITDA was impacted by the lower trading margins which were experienced in the ended period.

Marginally it is reported that $1 billion was registered following a $3.1 million revenue of 2017 and registered a steady but commendable 2.9 billion in the sales of rough diamonds.  Revenue is noted to have substantially come from but not limited to Element six where revenue has been in line, De Beers jewelers who are reported to have had their results consolidated following the acquisition in March 2017 of LVMH’s 50 percent interest. The already mentioned 1.6 percent price increase is also associated with the improvement in the sales mix which was substantially driven by volumes of lower value goods sold in 2017 after a demonetization programme befell India in 2016.

The Group has explained that the United States (US) market accounts to 50 percent of all polished diamonds globally and further highlighted that in China there is a registered growing trend that seems to be slowly gaining momentum as products confidence is realized in the Hong Kong market. In their overall mining and manufacturing over view,  in South Africa DBCM’s production decreased by 16 percent from 2.5 million carats of 2017 to 2.1 million carats.

The reduction is noted to have been primarily influenced by the suspended production in Venetia following fatal accidents. The group however noted they have since started investing tremendously in their health and safety. The Venetia Underground project is expected to become the mine’s principal source of production by 2023.

Debswana in Botswana which is highlighted to have registered the highest production volume in carats increased by 9 percent to 12.1 million carats compared to the same period in 2017 which registered 11.1 million carats in response to stronger market conditions. Production at Jwaneng was 2 percent higher owing to a 10 percent increase in plant throughout. At Orapa, a 16 percent rise in output was driven by the continued ramp-up of Plant 1, the successful restart of the Damtshaa operation and commissioning of the Letlhakane tailings plant. In June 2017, Jwaneng processed its first ore from Cut-8, which is now the mine’s main source of ore.

The results highlight that Namibia (Namdeb Holdings), production increased by 21 percent to 1.0 million carats compared to 0.9 million carats of the same period in 2017. Production from the marine operation is reported to have been 2 percent higher following improved availability of the Mafuta crawler vessel and technology-led optimization of the drill fleet.

Production at the land operations increased by 99 percent to 0.3 million carats (H1 2017: 0.2 million carats), driven by access to consistently higher grades. In Canada, it is reported production increased by 37 percent to 2.3 million carats owing to the ramp-up of Gahcho Kué, which entered commercial production in March 2017, as well as slightly improved grades at the mine.

Higher grades are noted to have also been achieved at Victor, where output increased by 16 percent to 0.4 million carats. For 2018, the group has concluded forecast diamond production which is based on a 100 percent basis, except at Gahcho Kué on an attributable 51% basis which remains unchanged at 34-36 million carats, subject to trading conditions.

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Food prices continue to rise, but at a slower rate

28th November 2022

Prices for cereals or staple foods in Botswana and other Southern African countries continue to rise at a slower pace, following trends in the global markets, according to the latest November 2022 Food Price Monitoring and Analysis by Food Agricultural Organization (FAO) of the United Nations.

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Still doing business the old way?

18th November 2022

It’s time to get business done better with MTN Business Botswanas ICT Solutions.

Running a digital businessMTN Business Solutions Botswana, popularly known as MTN Business is an Internet Service Provider. We are a subsidiary of MTN Group Limited, a multinational telecommunications Group headquartered in South Africa, which operates in 19 markets across Africa and the Middle East.

More and more, clients are looking for ways to keep their staff productive in a dynamically changing business environment. Whether your people are working from home, the office or abroad, there is a growing recognition that digitising your operations can offer unprecedented commercial value in flexibility, productivity and growth. This new, digital reality means that it is more important than ever to stay agile – if there is anything that can slow a business down, it is being burdened by othatld technology.

Having made substantial investments in fibre technology, high-speed terrestrial and undersea networks and new frequency spectrum across the markets wherein it operates, MTN is perfectly positioned to respond to this shift in the market.

A few years ago, MTN also made the decision to build an IP capable radio network for its mobile services, giving its core network the ability to seamlessly integrate with enterprise IP networks. The mobile towers deliver services to enterprise clients absolutely anywhere it has a network, shortening the last mile and removing complexity and cost.

Now there is increasing demand from clients to connect their remote sites in all areas, including rural and semi- rural. MTN has assisted clients with overcoming this connectivity hurdle, enabling their staff to get the job done wherever they are.
MTNs evolution

For MTN, the focus has shifted from just being a core telecommunications services provider, towards also becoming a technology solutions provider. The service offering now also includes Unified Communications, Data Hosting and Cloud Solutions, Security-As-A-Service and Managed Network Services. The scope has changed to being client and industry specific, so the requirements and service portfolio vary from one client to the next. The expectation is that a company like MTN must respond to these challenges, helping clients to get business done better as they shift from old to new technologies.

As many businesses continue to grapple with a digitally dynamic world, they face new challenges that have to be solved. This environment will benefit those that are more digitally enabled and agile. It is a brave new world that will favour online over on-site, wireless over wired and fluid over formulaic. Businesses will seek out partners and suppliers that are every bit as flexible and forward-looking as they are.
Ultimately, clients need partners like MTN Business that will invest in infrastructure, deliver the services they require, have market credibility, are financially sound and have a long-term commitment to their market presence.

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BIE to vitalize the Dignity of Engineers

9th November 2022

Botswana Institution Of Engineers (BIE), has last week hosted a gala dinner in which they appreciated engineers who worked tirelessly and with dedication for 10 years from 1983 to steer the BIE to its current status.

The event that was held at the Phakalane Golf Estate had brought together young, experienced and veteran engineers and was held under the theme Vitalize the dignity and eminence of all professional engineers.

Explaining the theme, the institutions treasurer, Thanabalasingam Raveendran said that engineers were looked upon reverentially with respect as the educated but with time it seems to have deteriorated. He indicated that there is a need to change the narrative by all means.

The BIE exists for the welfare and the betterment of us Botswana engineers, we need to recognize specialised units within our Institution. We Engineers strongly believe in Engineers make it happen Raveendran said.

He indicated that under the theme they appeal to all engineers to energize, to attain quality of being worthy of honour and respect and to achieve recognized superiority amongst the Society.

Raveendran stated that engineers need to ensure their end product is of good quality satisfying the end users expectations and engineers must be honest in their work.

Approximately 8000 engineers registered with Engineering Regulatory Board (ERB) are not members of the BIE, engineers need to make every effort to recruit them to BIE he said.

He alluded that BIE being a society, it currently needs to upgrade itself at par with professional institutions elsewhere like the UK and USA.

He further stated that BIE has to have engineering units of specialised disciplines like Civil/Mechanical/electrical etc

As President Masisi indicated in his inaugural speech, the young people, who make 60 percent of the population of this country, are the future leaders and therefore investing in them is building the bridge to the future said Raveendran

Kandima indicated that BIE has a memorandum of Understanding with Engineers Registration Board (ERB), where BIE is a recognised provider of CPD training, mentorship programmes and more importantly IPD undertaking to upgrade the skills and know-how of our engineers.

For us to achieve our mandate and make worthwhile changes to engineering in Botswana, we have to be totally focused and act with intent said Kandima.

Furthermore, Stephen Williams, past president of the BIE from 1986-1988 told the engineers that the BIE provides a fertile environment where they can meet, share ideas and grow professionally.

The BIE is also a nesting place for graduate engineers to learn from their peers and seniors, it also cater for engineering technicians and technologists and so nobody in the technology field is left out he said.

He further indicated that Botswana Government provides a conductive environment for growth of engineering professionals.

It must be stated that the Botswana Government recognises the existence of BIE and it can further be stated that the government enables ERB to carry out its mandate as a regulator of engineering professionals said Williams

He plead with engineering companies to recognize and support BIE as it is the only source of engineering personnels for various Industries .

Furthermore, when giving his farewell speech, Michael Pinard , a past president of the institution said how they are viewed as engineers by the general public might be due to some lack of appreciation as to exactly what role they play in the development of the country.

The BIE slogan is aptly coined-Engineers make it happen, in other words, what man dreams engineers create Said Pinard.

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