De Beers Hopes to Return to Angola

August 28, 2001

De Beers Hopes to Return to Angola

After suspending all operations in Angola in May, De Beers is now interested in working out its differences with the Angolan government, the Financial Times reports.

In May, De Beers said that over the past 12 months the legal status of its investments, as well as any guarantees regarding its past and future investments, had become uncertain. The company was unable to reach an agreement with the government, so it pulled its employees out of the country. The Angolan government expressed hope De Beers would return and continued to try to reach a compromise with the company.

Last week, De Beers officials said they hope to reach a mutually satisfactory accommodation with the Angolan government. According to the Financial Times, De Beers wants to have marketing rights to all diamonds produced by its joint venture with Endiama, the state-owned diamond company, as it does with similar joint ventures in Botswana and Namibia. Currently, Ascorp, a joint venture of the government and Israeli-Russian businessman Lev Leviev, has exclusive rights to market all Angolan diamonds.

- by Julia M. Duncan