THE Association of Zambia Women in Mining (AZWM) is next month expected to start exporting semi-precious stones worth K2 billion to Hong Kong.
Association chairperson Mary Lubemba said the exports would be done in batches and that the first one would be dispatched next month.
"We have just come back from the show in Hong Kong and we got orders of supply. We are supposed to supply semi-precious stones starting in December and the supplies are to be done in four months," she said in an interview.
Ms Lubemba said only two types of stones would be exported namely, amethyst and red granite.
She said the association got the order of supply from two Hong Kong companies and that they would supply low to middle grade of semi-precious stones.
Ms Lubemba said about 40 containers of low to middle grade semi-precious stones would be exported, adding that the capacity to supply the required quantity was available.
She, however, said the challenge would be that of transporting the stones from the mines to designated areas for shipping.
The onset of the rainy season, she added, would compound the challenges.
"We will ensure that we start supplying on time but the challenge will be that of transportation, rains and the fact that the stones will be in bulk, but all the same we will endeavour to meet the agreed quantity," she said.
She described the show as successful and thanked the Government for supporting and paving the way for the women miners to attend the show for the first time.
Ms Lubemba said the Government had played an important role in marketing the mining sector at the international level.
"For the first time we attended a show in Hong Kong and we thank the Government for the support; they paid for the booths we exhibited from," She said.
Ms Lumbemba also regretted that during the show, little sales were made as a result of not having the merchandise readily available due to delays in shipping.
"We made a few sales during the show from the samples we got; the container arrived late there so we did not have a lot of products to sell, but all the same the event was a success," she said.