Dar es Salaam, Tanzania — 07 June 2012 – The Arusha International Gem, Jewellery and Minerals Fair held in Arusha last month has been described as a major success in terms of organisation, future transactions and on-the-spot sales.
Quoting the “Tanzania Daily News”, allAfrica.com reports that the fair, held after a 12-year lull, had realised its main anticipated goals of attracting international mineral dealers to the country and of turning Arusha into global centre for mineral auctioning.
Richland Resources, through their unit Tanzanite One Mining, had more than a field day as they alone sold tanzanite stones worth over US$3 million during the fair. The amount almost matched total sales for the 2011 first quarter, which amounted to US$3.96 million.
Tanzanite One is the biggest miner of the rare blue gemstone in the world. Fair organising chairman Abe Suleiman told the “Business Standard” earlier that the fair had aimed at generating somewhere between US$1 and US$6 million. He said he was confident that the target would be achieved.
“The government wants to turn Arusha into a regional gemstone centre due to its comparative advantages which include geographic location and abundance of minerals,” Suleiman said. Richland Resources CEO Bernard Olivier said the complete report on actual figures the firm sold during the fair would be reported in the second quarter.
“The company is very pleased with the success of the Arusha gem show in Tanzania,” he added. “The support of big tanzanite miners and the introduction of certificates of origin in real time will help to curb smuggling of gemstones outside the country.”
The Ministry of Energy and Minerals announced recently that no foreign buyers would be allowed to buy tanzanite without a certificate of origin, a system introduced last October.
According to the ministry, the initiative, if properly administered, would help plug all illegal ‘panya routes’ used by unscrupulous Tanzanian tanzanite dealers who illicitly export the gemstone.
Source: allAfrica.com. For more information, click here.