The South African Young Diamond Beneficiatos’ Guild was launched on 27 October at the inaugural South African Diamond Indaba - Sandton Convention Centre, Johannesburg.
The Guild aims to help start-ups led by mainly young, black entrepreneurs to cut and polish diamonds as well as to boost the processing and manufacturing of rough diamonds.
CapeTalk’s Redi Tlhabi spoke to Molefi Letsiki, President of The South African Young Diamond Beneficiators Guild about reasons The Guild was formed.
Listen to the full conversation on The Redi Tlhabi Show below:
He says that The Guild was formed by individuals from emerging companies in the sector earlier this year, after the realisation that South Africa manufactures the least of the diamonds it produces.
As a country we need to look at developing our own manufacturing bases— Molefi Letsiki, President of The South African Young Diamond Beneficiators Guild
He says that there is a need to industrialize South Africa by setting up local manufacturing companies that will cut and polish the diamonds instead of getting the diamonds polished outside the country.
According to Letsiki the number of diamond cutters in South Africa has dropped drastically over the last two decades leaving the country with about 300 diamond cutters.
This is due to international companies leaving South Africa to start businesses in other countries, he says.
Letsiki says the sector needs to be revitalized and be brought back to life.