Zambia’s new emerald restrictions bad, 7 buyers fail to make it

Filed under: Breaking News |

LUSAKA — A lack of buyers at a Zambian emerald auction on Tuesday raised doubt about the government’s recent and controversial decision to ban foreign sales of the gems.

Twenty-four of 31 Indian gemstone companies turned up to an auction in Lusaka, amid complaints from buyers that hosting auctions in the Zambian capital is impractical.

Zambia last week banned the selling of its gemstones abroad, a move the government said was meant to protect the country from unscrupulous buyers and keep gem wealth in the country.

“Zambian gemstones have for a long time been sold on foreign markets, a situation that has contributed to capital flight and denied Zambians the much-needed benefits from the resource,” the country’s mines ministry said.

That irked organiser Gemfields, which is part-owned by the Zambian government. Gemfields has warned the decision will prevent producers from getting top dollar for the stones.

“We had invited 31 companies and seven will not make it, which means that only 24 will attend,” Gemfields executive director Sean Gilbertson said.

Gemfields controls most of the country’s production.

“These companies are coming from India and to travel from there to here takes about 24 hours,” he said.

“As you know Zambia is the third-largest producer of emeralds and such a restriction would have seriously affected the growth of the emerald industry,” he said.

An Indian investor, Jagdish Tambi, who runs KL Tambi which produces tanzanite and emeralds, also complained the auction would not take place closer to India, where many buyers are from.

“We are not happy about this thing, I had to change three flights and the whole journey takes about 24 hours,” he said.

“It was going to be fair if the auctioning was held in Singapore or Johannesburg and not here. Besides the travel complication, there are some local traders pushing us to see their products and that is confusing,” Mr Tambi said.

The auction will close on Friday.

Sapa-AFP

Comments Closed

68 Responses to Zambia’s new emerald restrictions bad, 7 buyers fail to make it

  1. GOVT SHOULD NOT GIVE IN TO BLACKMAIL WHATS THE DIFFERENCE OF HOSTING THE AUCTION IN JOHANNESBURG OR SINGEPORE. LETS NOT FORGET THAT WE ARE DEALING WITH A WELL ORGANISED CARTEL WHICH WILL DO EVERYTHIG TO FRUSTRATE OUR EFFORTS TO EARN FOREX FROM EMERALDS RESOURCES.EVEN COMPLAINTS FROM GEMFILED CEO SEAN GILBERTSON IS NOTHING BUT PART OF THE CARTEL. THE MAN IS AN INTERESTED PARTY. AUCTIONS SHOULD ALWAYS BE HELD LOCALY SO THAT WE BUILD LOCAL CAPACITY IN TERMS OF AUCTIONING. WE MAY SUFFER SETBACKS HERE AND THERE BUT IN FUTURE IT WILL WORK OUT TO THE BENEFITS OF OUR ECONOMY.IF HERE ARE NO BUYERS THEN LETS KEEP OUR GEMS IN BANK VAULTS IT WILL NOT ROT LIKE TOMATOES.

    Mau Mau - April 18, 2013
    09:22

  2. I am not PF but on this one bravo boma!

    Mwana - April 18, 2013
    01:48

    • Have you been to proper school? Have you had adequate education? Did you go through education by leakage?

      Homestead Musambachime - April 18, 2013
      05:00

  3. This is the first auction that has taken place locally in a long time. You do not expect 100% attendance the first time. This time it is okay to sell the stones for a slightly lower value. And these companies that say it is difficult to travel are being ridiculous. South Africa is further away than Zambia. I am an Indian of Zambian origin and I know how these Indians want to get everything in the cheapest way possible. We will benefit way more from the sale of emeralds this way.

    Nummy - April 17, 2013
    21:32

    • Stones never rot,we shall kep them,they can go buy elsewhere.We dont need criminal customers

      diramba - April 17, 2013
      21:58

  4. Nonsense, they must come to buy from here. We follow them when we need to buy from them, don’t we?

    Sacks Ngwele - April 17, 2013
    20:26

  5. Why did they invite only indians,already i smell a cartel to rig prices.The government should engage sothebys of london to handle the auctions here or in newyork.

    Puungwa - April 17, 2013
    20:01

    • indians have always made 90 percent of gemston buying bcoz most of it is used fir religous purposes. second indians sell it off easily in bollywood n neghbouring adian tigers where people have money.

      bemba bitch - April 17, 2013
      21:40

  6. The 7 who did not make dont just have the money..attendance is by INVITATION so sometimes you get invited at wrong TIME…we know this industry..on this one iam with PF though Iam not PF myself

    scree - April 17, 2013
    19:38

  7. Gunassi’s cohorts need to be checked and stopped in their schemes to smuggle our stones and deprive us the owners of gemstones. Its long over due bagaeso!

    Ngoza again - April 17, 2013
    18:57

  8. Good move by Goverment. 24 out of 31 is good turn out by any measure. At least they will pay some hotel bills here and maybe visit chaminuka. Most importantly we shall know the real value of our export. Lets not complain anyhow

    The voice of reason - April 17, 2013
    18:24

  9. Good move. These “bankers” with a”w” are able to under declare revenues when they sell outside resulting in lower taxes to government, if any. In the Lusaka auction DEC, ACC , ZRA are in attendance making sure everyone plays by the rules. Wapya munzi !

    Observer - April 17, 2013
    18:17

  10. sell gemstones to locals for kwacha …….then what ?????

    I thought the most economical way is to sell them outside the country for Forex ! (total display of ignorance and lack of policy on national wealth – learn from countries like Botswana how they manage their more precious mineral than gems for their country’s wealth – they don’t sell inside they sell outside 4value).

    I cant really understand such extreme dullness of the PF, playing with national wealth like that while while its own poor people are suffering where even water is a challenger to have ! (those are big dollars for crying out loud if sold outside).

    Blind Supporter - April 17, 2013
    17:56

    • Last year Botswana also localised the sale of her diamonds.

      chandizo - April 17, 2013
      18:06

      • you should also localize the sale of copper ! how different is it from gems

        cadre - April 17, 2013
        19:42

      • Localise also the sale of copper ! whats the difference with gems

        Francis - April 17, 2013
        19:51

  11. We havent been benefiting anyway, so why the fuss. It just shows that the previous system was not in our favour. Besides evrytime a new system is intruduced, it takes time to mature. With time this will be a very beneficial thing. Good work government.

    Observer - April 17, 2013
    16:03

    • Is this how the Gold held by DEC was sold by Aaron Zulu?

      Martin - April 17, 2013
      16:59

  12. ZWD is not thinking rationally, this is a good move by govt. it was only the other day you wrote some silly article about “sacrifise”. We are watching you also.

    john - April 17, 2013
    15:38

  13. Can I suggest that people do some research before commenting please? Lusaka can host host a grand slam golf or tennis tournament. Lusaka can host a World Cup soccer final, the oscars and the Grammys. The question is how many people that really matter would come and attend and how much money would be raised for Zambia? Think, countrymen and women please?

    Fred - April 17, 2013
    15:32

    • PF intentions are almost always good. Manje, consultation, execution, implementation?……awe sure, PF for sure, as in Poor Finishing!

      Fred - April 17, 2013
      15:39

    • what are you trying to say ‘Mr. I Know it all’? if you not proud of your country, fcuk off & if you not proud of your fcukin self, die! simple…

      NOTONGA4PRESIDO - April 17, 2013
      15:39

      • Thanks chief insulting officer (CIO), all you know are insults, all I have is an opinion. Only God knows it all. Lets debate, insults will not take us anywhere.

        Fred - April 17, 2013
        15:46

      • So your name is No tonga for presido? from zambia? What a name and what a statement. God save Zambia!

        Chitimukulu - April 17, 2013
        15:52

  14. We control demand, next time it will be finished products only fuck off Indians. Its about time. People have we noticed how many times we keep saying this and that project was started by MMD and PF is only finishing they should not take credit. That is bullshit PF is a finisher and work oriented. It takes clout to make tough decisions that matter and not just preaching and preaching about empowerment. Emeralds are just that …precious…why should some flat ass Indian not book and connect three planes and come to Zambia. Lets expand the market , the Chinese will buy them . I am rejoining PF, for now.

    Joe The Plumber - April 17, 2013
    15:31

  15. Those who need the Emeralds will come to Zed and the opposite is true.

    Al - Capone - April 17, 2013
    15:01

  16. ZWD, your heading is alarming for nothing. If only 7 had turned up out of 31 invited, then it would have made sense but 24 came, saw and bought. This means our product has value and is in demand. Stop being negative on everything PF, even a talkative mad man says something sensible once in a while.

    The Crossed-Eyed Assasin - April 17, 2013
    14:57

    • In fact Zambia’s emaralds are the best in the world.It’s just a matter of time,more buyers will come next time otherwise 24 out of 31 buyers is not bad.

      chandizo - April 17, 2013
      18:13

  17. efyo twalefwaya. if u chi ma indian u do not want do not come nest tym. viva grz

    mebzo - April 17, 2013
    14:57

  18. 24 out of 31 is practically 80% attendance. Thats good attendance really, stop being alarmist.

    tut - April 17, 2013
    14:53

  19. Also like the idea the government put in place. Viva pf.

    tonto fever - April 17, 2013
    14:50

  20. WHAT IS THE OVERSEAS COST TO GEMFIELDS AND OTHERS IN TRANSPORTING AND INSURANCE etc ??
    THE MOVE WAS LONG OVERDUE.
    SOON ZAMBIA WILL BE KNOWN FOR MARKETING EMERALDS.

    ZAMBIAN CASSANDRA - April 17, 2013
    14:48

    • This is not about GEMFIELDS, you dull backward people. This is about the buyers making it to the market. Already you have lost 7 buyers, being an auction means that the remaining 24 will dictate an even lower price for your emerald. On the other hand, selling your emeralds abroad means that you have more buyers competing, hence higher price. But ofcourse, you zambians still live in stone age, using bow-and-arrow to hunt anumals…too backward to understand economics.

      dial - April 17, 2013
      15:07

      • shut the fcuk up! but who tells you that bidders wants to buy at a higher price? ever heard of a word called ‘reserve price’? they are complaining about something else….this is a plus to PF….by end of next year, PF will need no introduction to voters all over Zambia…lets go!!

        NOTONGA4PRESIDO - April 17, 2013
        15:36

        • Who cares about you, monkey! What do you know about economics? Who is talking about PF, here? – Or were you just waiting for me to say something so that you w.a.n.k over my words!! Don’t start what you can’t finish, yellow-bellied, halitotic, corn-headed, head-in-ahole,toilet-cleaning, slime!

          dial - April 17, 2013
          17:36

          • why are u insultin? ur comments re great bt……..

            Ntabafye - April 17, 2013
            17:54

          • mr. scam bag a.k.a dick face….calm down! yes i don’t know much about economics but a great deal about procurement coz thats what feeds my family….if you are an economist, i am willing to bet my blackass that you bought your certificate from Soweto going by your sense of reasoning exhibited here….kafele kutali galu iwe!

            NOTONGA4PRESIDO - April 17, 2013
            18:20

  21. GOOD MOVE.KEEP IT UP

    MULOJHII MWEEMBA - April 17, 2013
    14:40

  22. i am with the governmenton ON this one.thumbs up PF

    ftj - April 17, 2013
    14:37

    • Also like the idea the government put in place. Viva pf.

      tonto fever - April 17, 2013
      14:46

  23. ZWD, how can u call 77% a raising of doubt.
    These people need the emeralds so they will come to buy
    Kwasila

    brasho - April 17, 2013
    14:35

  24. AM SELLING SOME BUT NO PAPERS. CHEAP, I WANT TO BUY A TOYOTA CORROLA

    Goldiga - April 17, 2013
    14:22

  25. CONSIDERING OTHER RELATED COSTS ZAMBIA STANDS TO BENEFIT A PART FROM EMERALD ITSELF;TRANSPORT,FOOD,ACCOMODATION AND OTHERS

    isaac - April 17, 2013
    14:22

  26. 24 OUT OF 31 TURNED THIS GIVES 77% TURN OUT. THIS IS FANTASTIC ESPECILALLY THAT THIS IS THE FIRST AUCTION. THE DEALERS WILL MAKE SAVINGS IN TERMS OF FLIGHT, LODGING AND OTHER LOGISTICS INCLUDING DOING AWAY WITH THE ASSOCIATED RISKS. SO FOR ME THE DEALERS WILL START MAKING SUPPERPROFITS WHICH IS GOOD FOR ZAMBIA. CHEERS PF

    Kajimang - April 17, 2013
    14:08

    • @ Kajimang, i want to agree with u on this one, i dont wana speculate unknown losses here. Can ZWD tell us how much these stones cost in those countries and how much they were sold here, lets do a cost/benefit here rather than just opposing any move made by MCS…Moreover there are economic spillovers that Zambians will enjoy from this!!!

      X.dot - April 17, 2013
      14:25

    • I think the dealers may not really make super profits. But it s a good move, only we can not reap the fruits now. Lets give it time and lets hope the next auction wont have a 54% from 77%.

      So far only the buyers are complaining so the question is why are the dealers queit. They may be complaining but it may be not easy for them to speak out now.

      Lets just wait and see. All in all i say thumbs up gvmt

      Ka-Mbewa - April 17, 2013
      16:32

  27. Good move.
    Those who don’t want our quality gems can fuck off to india.

    Blaxon - April 17, 2013
    14:01

  28. Good move for Zambia, its for the customer to follow the products and not the supplier, there are a lot of customers for these Gems. Blavo PF

    wenye - April 17, 2013
    13:47

  29. Well done to the Government for this brilliant move.

    Editor in chief - April 17, 2013
    13:44

  30. Let them come here or else let’s keep our emeralds. The monsters have been stealing for years and its time to seal loop hoes. VIVA PF!

    mwamba mutale - April 17, 2013
    13:40

  31. What do you expect from bamwenye; the damn dreaded shop-keepers? They want us to dance to their music? No way Zambia, that’s the way to do it. Sooner than later, hundreds of buyers from all over the World will be flocking to Zambia especially once the international Market is starved. Go Zambia, Goooo…..

    Chumbu Munshululwa - April 17, 2013
    13:29

  32. Its good for Zambia. 31 out of 24 is not bad. after all these visitors bring in foreign exchange into our country cause they have to buy our food, accomodation, transport etc.

    jill - April 17, 2013
    13:19

  33. Two hour from Jburg to Zambia.Umpafiwe aulwa ne cibi

    demanddriven - April 17, 2013
    13:14

  34. They are just politicking.For us long us they need the emaralds they will come.They indian chap is colliding with the buyers so that the law can be reversed.They fail we will store for future consumption.Let not dance to thier gallary they should instead.

    demanddriven - April 17, 2013
    13:10

  35. WHERE IS GARRY NKOMBO MWEBANTU? BUT PRISON IS A VERY GOOD LESSON. IT EVEN MAKES TALKATIVE PEOPLE LESS TALKATIVE.

    Fwebamano - April 17, 2013
    13:06

  36. “Zambia’s new emerald restrictions bad, 7 buyers fail to make it” So what? That is our wealthy. Take it or leave it. ZWD is opposed to anything the govt does which is for the enefit of the nation. Iddiioots.

    KIDMAN - April 17, 2013
    13:03

  37. The Government must must put its foot firmly down on this issue. If the zambian Gemstones are of high value the buyers will beat a path to Lusaka. What is that little travel incovinience compared to what these traders will rake in profits. Could be a case of someone losing that oppotunity for some shade deal. In this day and age, for all i know that participant can trade while he is in India by using local expertise right here. That is what we call creating quality jobs and incomes for our people.

    Black Mist - April 17, 2013
    12:50

  38. What is wrong with local traders showing them their product? Infact this will open up market for more local small traders. Give it time and Zambia will become Gem a big market.

    Pal - April 17, 2013
    12:46

    • Its not easy to develop such a market. Government needed to have investigated and started putting up the enough information systems for such a market before effecting the ban. It wont help our emerald in fetching a good price if market is isolated and expensive to get to.

      Vilifier - April 17, 2013
      13:06

      • You are always opposing everything. Sooner you will start opposing yourself to go to the toilet

        kuku bwalya - April 17, 2013
        14:41

  39. Why go all the way to Singapore to sell the emaralds at aour cost! This st.inking indian is mad! Tell him to put his rupees in his backside where the sun will never ever shine!

    CHOOMA - April 17, 2013
    12:37

    • CHOMA you are evil-minded. Indians are also God’s creation and to insult them the way you have done is to ……God Almighty himself. Do you not fear God??? Just disagree.

      I support the government on this one. I am one person who has wondered where revenue from gemstones goes. Zambians of African origin are also involved.

      PRAISE GOD - April 17, 2013
      13:56

  40. 24 out of 31 isnt bad especially for starters!!!!

    zagwa zatha - April 17, 2013
    12:27

  41. “It was going to be fair if the auctioning was held in Singapore or Johannesburg and not here. Besides the travel complication, there are some local traders pushing us to see their products and that is confusing,” Mr Tambi said.
    so this means that some emerald miners just took a few samples to the auction……and they want to sell the rest secretly

    zambiana - April 17, 2013
    12:19

  42. F**k you Tambi, we’ll through the emaralds in the zambezi if we want! the emaralds are our and you play by our rules…

    The Patriot - April 17, 2013
    12:12

  43. this is good. they will get used. What is the distance between lusaka and J’burg for them to say atleast j’burg? its a scum that will not work

    kelly - April 17, 2013
    12:12

    • Then let them fly directly to Joburg and then connect to lusaka. Only one connection!! Silly complaint.

      callboy Lusaka - April 17, 2013
      14:08

  44. Blundell - April 17, 2013
    12:11