Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Diamond money

The Zim Guardian:

THE Treasury is benefiting from sales of diamonds that have surpassed US$170 million this year alone, despite Finance Minister Tendai Biti's claims that diamond dividends were not flowing into the national fiscus.

Documents obtained by the State-run Herald newspaper reveal that Treasury will benefit from at least US$174 million in diamond sales for January to February 7 alone.

Some of the money has already reached the Treasury, although Biti claims that the country has not benefitted from diamonds...

Sources also indicated that Minister Biti was trying to force the Mines and Mining Development Corporation into revealing how Zimbabwe sells its diamonds, which could result in the contracted foreign firms being slapped with Western sanctions.

Recent revelations by whistle-blower website WikiLeaks claim Minister Biti has in the past been actively consulted by the EU when the bloc structured its sanctions regime.

from UPI:

HARARE, Zimbabwe, Feb. 14 (UPI) -- Zimbabwe's government says it will investigate the disappearance of $100 million in proceeds from an auction of diamonds.

The Ministry of Finance received a document from President Robert Mugabe's office passed to him from The Minerals Marketing Corp. of Zimbabwe saying it had given $170 million from the sale of Marange diamonds last year to the treasury....

"Treasury only received $64 million from the sale of alluvial and kimberlite diamonds. In that schedule MMCZ claims that treasury used part of the money to pay tax to Zimra....

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