Japanese Ambassador to Botswana, Masahiro Onishi, says he appreciates the importance of the diamond industry to the economy of Botswana as well as Debswana Jwaneng Mine’s role in the development of the country.
Onishi was speaking during a tour of the Jwaneng Mine facilities on Friday 17th April 2015 during which he met with some of the Executive Team of Jwaneng Mine. The Ambassador also undertook a guided tour of the Mine facilities including a tour of the pit and truck workshop.
“It was amazing to learn about mining and what is involved in the mining and processing of diamonds. Jwaneng Mine has a very impressive facility and I have a much better understanding of what is involved in diamond mining and how capital intensive diamond mining is. Today’s tour was very important and we enjoyed it a lot,” he said after the visit.
In terms of global share of demand for polished diamonds Japan remains one of the largest markets in the world, including USA, China and India. When presenting to the delegates, Acting Senior Mineral Resources Management (MRM) Manager, Phenyo Maoto, said 2014 was a strong year for Jwaneng Mine.
He added that the Mine has carried through the strong performance to the first quarter of 2015. In 2014, the Mine safety figures improved, registering a significant decline in injury rate by 49% in TRIFR from 0.75 in 2013 to 0.34 in 2014.
“Jwaneng Mine Safety performance has continued to be exceptional. It is ISO 14001, OHSAS 18001 Certified and the Jwaneng Mine Hospital is COHSASA accredited,” Maoto said when presenting on Jwaneng Mine’s safety performance.
Onishi was accompanied by his wife Sae Onishi and some of the Embassy staff.