A six-member Zambian delegation is in Ghana to explore viable opportunities of marketing and selling Zambian gemstones by the Precious Minerals Marketing Company (PMMC).
The delegation has therefore held several meetings with officials of the PMMC that is expected to seal a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in September this year.
Gemstones are precious metals used in making jewellery.
The Managing Director of the PMMC, Alhaji Alhassan Sulemana said the team from the PMMC will pay a reciprocal visit to some Zambia mining firms to understand their operations and the types of gemstones that will be marketed and sold in Ghana.
The delegation to Zambia would exchange draft MoUs which is to be studied by both parties and fine-tuned before the final agreement is signed in September in 2019.
“This is in line with the ‘Ghana beyond Aid’ mantra being promoted by the President [Akufo-Addo] and to also ensure that it provides an opportunity for us to diversify our business”, Alhaji Alhassan Sulemana said.
“We are keen on diversifying our operations and exploring many other profitable and viable mineral ventures”, he said.
Alhaji Sulemana said a research conducted by PMMC in Accra and Kumasi has indicated that there was a high demand for gemstones in the country.
Even though Zambia is well known for copper production, it is also endowed with a vast amount of gemstones, which have not been fully mined like copper.
Some of the gemstones from Zambia include amethyst, which is a violet variety of quartz often used in making jewelry. It is a macro-crystalline branch of quartz and it is the most popular and the most valuable stone.
There is also the aquamarine, which is blue or may sometimes look blue-green to enhance its aqua shine. The stone is famous for its beautiful and breathtaking sea-blue colours.
Then there are the Zambian Emeralds, which is the most favourite in the world because of its bluish-green colour which is similar to that of Colombia’s “emerald-green”.
The Zambian tourmaline also comes in different mixed colours, which makes the South African country hub of precious gemstones.
Head of the Zambian delegation and Senior Economist at the Ministry of Mines and Minerals Development, Mr Mukoba Mwansa Mbulakulima said the project to market and sell Zambian gemstones in Ghana is being spearheaded by the Association of Zambian Women in mining and that the move is to encourage Intra African trade.