As the popularity of diamonds in the precious metal investing and trading market decreases, Tanzania, the world’s third-largest gold producer, increased shipments of the metal to a record high last year. Tanzania currently vies with Mali to be Africa’s third-largest gold producer. The record amount of gold exported from the country is aiding in the endeavor.
Exports from the country in 2011 almost reached $2 billion, which is a far cry from the $1.4 billion the year prior. Although the central bank will release official data later this year, these numbers are estimations that financial experts have come to agree on. While the increase in exports cannot solely be attributed to higher prices of gold in the international market, it is definitely a primary contributing factor. Since 1998, Tanzania has earned over 800 billion shillings from its gold, copper and silver exports, and has plans to expand their production and earning capital. Gold production from competitive countries will drop even further next year (when several competing mines are scheduled to close).
Diamonds, on the other hand, have experienced a drop in the industry. Diamond shipments dropped to $7.5 million last year, which is the lowest it has been in eleven years. This is due, in part, to a cease in production at Mwandui, which is experiencing renovations and much needed rehabilitation to an old and outdated processing plant.
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