High Commissioner of India visits Kagem emerald mine
LUFWANYAMA, ZAMBIA, 20 APRIL 2022
The High Commissioner of India to Zambia, HE Ashok Kumar, visited the Kagem emerald mine in Lufwanyama District last week as part of his official tour to the Copperbelt Province.
The Envoy viewed the mine’s pit and sort house during a guided tour by General Manager Sanjeev Kumar, who explained processes involved at Kagem, believed to be the world’s single largest producing emerald mine, owned by London-based Gemfields in partnership with the Zambian government’s Industrial Development Corporation (IDC).
Jaipur, India is the world’s most important trading centre for emeralds, representing a key market for Zambia’s gemstone sector.
The High Commissioner said: “I have been impressed by what I have seen at Kagem. The company is leading the way in responsible mining of gemstones in Zambia and indeed globally. I have also seen how the company demonstrates its commitment to local communities, and is contributing significantly to Zambia’s economy through tax, dividends, employment and foreign exchange earnings.”
Kagem’s General Manager said: “It was an honour to welcome His excellency the High Commissioner of India to Kagem and give him first-hand experience of the mining operations which provide a consistent supply of coloured gemstones to the global jewellery market.”
The visit was in keeping with Kagem’s ethos of promoting transparency, legitimacy and integrity within the sector as a whole.
Kagem responsible sourcing highlights
- Kagem is committed to ensuring that the community continues to benefit positively from its operations through various sustainability programmes focused on alleviating poverty and aligned with government policies, the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Vision 2030
- The mine has spent more than USD 2.8 million on community projects, including:
- Rehabilitation of the 18.7km road connecting Chief Nkana and Chief Lumpuma’s chiefdoms from Kandole to Kafwaya village in Lufwanyama district
- Construction of the Nkana Health Centre
- Construction and equipping of a new Chapula Secondary School
- Construction of new buildings at Chapula Primary School
- Building of teachers’ accommodation at Kapila Community School
- Support for the Blessing, Kapila Green Farms, Twende and Twasanta projects
- Improvements to Chief Nkana and Chief Lumpuma’s palaces
- Kagem’s USD 345,000 industry training initiative is sponsoring students from the geological and mining engineering departments at the School of Mines at the University of Zambia (UNZA) and Copperbelt University (CBU) over a period of eight years.
- The 40 auctions of Kagem gemstones held since July 2009 have generated USD 792 million in total revenue.
- Kagem currently provides 1,150 direct jobs, with 94% of the workforce being local.
About Kagem Mining
Kagem Mining Ltd, based in Lufwanyama, is believed to be the world’s single largest producing emerald mine. Kagem is 75% owned by Gemfields, in a model partnership with the Zambian government.
Kagem aims to emulate the values of Gemfields and operate in a way that contributes positively to the national economy, while taking a leading role in modernising the coloured gemstone sector and building sustainable livelihoods for the communities around the mine. Kagem believes that coloured gemstones should be mined and marketed by championing three key values – transparency, legitimacy and integrity.
Gemfields is a world-leading miner of responsible coloured gemstones. In addition to Kagem, Gemfields is the operator and 75% owner of Montepuez Ruby Mining in Mozambique (at one of the most significant recently discovered ruby deposits in the world), as well as bulk sampling licences in Ethiopia, amongst others.
Gemfields has developed a proprietary grading system and a pioneering auction and trading platform to provide a consistent supply of coloured gemstones to the global jewellery market.
Fabergé – an iconic name with an exceptional heritage – is a member of the Gemfields Group. The beauty of Fabergé’s designs and craftsmanship, helps to raise consumer awareness of responsibly sourced coloured gemstones.
As well as supplying a significant share of the world’s rough rubies and emeralds, Gemfields initiates activations to build desire for coloured gemstones: for example, collaborations with international jewellery brands and other creative partners. Often surprising, unexpected and unique, these collaborations are chosen to promote consumer awareness and increase the appeal of coloured gemstones, raising their profile, and, in turn, providing greater benefit to their place of origin in Africa.