Zimbabwe’s diamonds have been a major hit at the Dubai Diamond Exchange with some 105 buyers registering on the first day.
The diamonds from Anjin, Jinan, Development Trust of Zimbabwe, Diamond Mining Company, Marange Resources, Mbada and Kusena are on auction from 23 to 30 March.
More than 400 000 carats are on sale.
Zimbabwe’s diamonds have also attracted a lot of interest at Antwerp, where two auctions have already been held raising more than US$80 million.
Antwerp Diamond World Centre chief executive Ari Epstein promised better returns for diamonds sold at his exchange saying prices for diamonds sold in December and February were 30 percent above the producing companies’ expectations and an astonishing 50 to 60 percent higher than prices fetched in Zimbabwe and other diamond centres.
He said prior to trading in Antwerp, Marange diamonds were sold at an average price of US$ 47 per carat, resulting in an average return on investment for the Zimbabwean treasury of US$ 7.05/ct.
The average price at Antwerp was US$80/ct., raising US$12 per carat in royalties for the treasury.
The ADWC said: “If all sales were to go through Antwerp, Zimbabwe would gain more than US$ 400 million in extra revenues, resulting in an increase of US$ 60 million of royalties per year.”