Gaborone — President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi has credited players in the diamond value chain with saving the industry from total collapse.
Speaking during the virtual 2020 Diamond Impact Week launch, he said owing to their resilience over the recent months of COVID-19, there had been an improvement in diamond sales, albeit minimal.
Diamond sles had dropped significantly in the first and second quarter of 2020, he noted.
The President said Botswana was now open for business with the local beneficiation initiative operational and international transactions taking place.
The week's events started on November 30 with the launch of the De Beers Group Building Forever Strategy that would enable the company to collaborate with communities where it is operating.
Other activities planned for the week include the annual W-Summit, which is a platform for women in business to discuss pertinent issues related to their success, as well as the Youth Entrepreneurship Webinar, which will help young people to interact and network with other entrepreneurs.
The programmes, the President said, were all aligned to the national development strategy aimed at enhancing the inclusion of women and youth in business.
The direct involvement of the W-Summit patron, First Lady Neo Masisi, would help ensure that issues of women in development, leadership and business were amplified and addressed, the President said.
Dr Masisi congratulated the De Beers Group for the Sweepstakes initiative aimed at recognising Botswana's frontline workers for continuing to demonstrate patriotism, resilience and selflessness in the fight against COVID-19.
He expressed the hope that the opening of international borders would resuscitate the tourism industry, which he said was one of the hardest hit by COVID-19, as it experienced extreme losses.
"In this respect, I want to encourage you to continue your visits to Botswana to support our tourism," he said.
Source : BOPA