De Beers is preparing to open the Voorspoed diamond mine in South Africa, this year on November 4th. Anticipated to produce approximately 1 million carats of diamonds annually, Voorspoed is expected to be rich in reserves of large and exotic colored diamonds, although the goods are believed to be of fairly low quality.
Empowerment is enshrined in South Africa’s Financial Services Charter which came into effect earlier this year. Such empowerment will inevitably lead to growth as well as the promotion of black South Africans, including women, to company boards and transform the way companies choose their staff. The Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) initiative works on a 100 point basis, incorporating such aspects as black ownership, black board members, employees, training and company enterprise promotion. The results for each company will be annually scored and publicly announced. Many black South Africans still live in desperate poverty which appears to be getting worse as blacks are getting poorer and whites are getting richer. Initiatives will promote entrepreneurship and improve workforce skills, resulting in a necessary redistribution of wealth.
The Voorspoed mine will have the potential to create 420 jobs and will be the first mine opened under the BEE. However, according to finance professionals, South African companies are presently undervalued by the London stock market because foreign investors are concerned about the Black Economic Empowerment initiative so De Beers and BEE, let’s prove London wrong!
De Beers Consolidated Mines Limited