Our Members are committed to the local sourcing of goods and services, building infrastructure such as roads and schools, partnering with local governments to advance healthcare and education, helping local businesses to develop and flourish and ensuring lasting benefits for generations to come.
Our key focus areas
DPA Member operations depend on the local economies for the procurement of goods and services. Each year, DPA Members infuse US$6.8 billion in surrounding communities through local sourcing, which in turn supports the growth of small and medium enterprises.
Local purchasing not only helps small businesses, but it also has a broader ‘multiplier effect’. Local contracts deliver direct benefits, such as demand for goods and services, and indirect benefits further downstream -- such as demand for raw materials. For example, increased spending in construction to build a new health care clinic stimulates additional spending in sectors that supply the project both directly and indirectly, such as raw materials and engineering services. Owning a small or medium-sized company brings with it a host of challenges, and our Members offer additional support, beyond financial investment and long-term contracts. For example, Petra has established an Enterprise Development Resource Centre at each of its South African operations to serve as a link between local businesses and the mine’s supply chain. Similarly, De Beers Group’s Zimele initiative provides developmental funding, training and mentoring across a broad spectrum of businesses and industries. As of June 2017, the program had supported 3,054 jobs and 262 enterprises.
Local purchasing has a broader “multiplier effect” on local communities
The effects of local purchasing ripple through the broader local economy.
- Members prioritize purchasing goods and services from local businesses.
- Suppliers purchase goods and services, creating a multiplier effect through the local economy.
- Example: Members purchase food for workers at mine sites, creating consistent revenue for local agriculture businesses.
- Agriculture businesses make purchases from business partners and vendors and hire workers who purchase personal goods and services.
Empowering Local Entrepreneurs
Small businesses and the ambitious, hard-working people that own them are the foundations of a vibrant economy. Through business training and incubation programs, Murowa Diamonds helps local entrepreneurs turn their dreams into reality.
Miew Investments is a construction company in south central Zimbabwe that Murowa Diamonds helped form through provision of seed capital, training, incorporating health and safety and awarding repeat business through construction contracts. Company Director Tauya Chiromo and his team were able to leverage their experience to secure new clients like World Vision. Miew Investments continues to work with Murowa, helping build classroom blocks at 13 schools in Zvishavane District, among other projects. “We started with nine employees in 2006 and today with have 54,” said Tauya.
Murowa Diamonds provides development programs helping entrepreneurs build their businesses, creating ongoing employment opportunities and building local capacity. By tapping into the entrepreneurial spirit that runs through communities, local businesses stimulate sustainable growth, cultivating lasting economic development and prosperity throughout the region.
Miew Investments Company Director Tauya Chiromo and a team member on-site in Zimbabwe, building classrooms. Miew is a construction company that was formed with seed funding from Murowa.
Solving Supply Chain Challenges
Petra believes helping local businesses grow and thrive is essential to creating lasting economic development in communities. The Enterprise Development Resource Centers at each of its South African operations help local entrepreneurs to overcome the challenges they face.
Businesses supported by the centers also are afforded opportunities to enter Petra’s supply chain. Petra’s mines often present the only major economic activity in the local area due to the remote locations of their operations, predominantly in areas of relatively low levels of socio-economic development and high unemployment.
Tsietse Beshu’s first big construction project was installing a series of arches for Petra in 2016. This gave him the skills and confidence to go on to other projects and build a successful local business.
Tsietse says, “Winning that first project helped to boost the profile of my company and taught me skills I didn’t have before. I’m looking forward to learning even more from my work with Petra.”
Empowering Local Entrepreneurs
After two years looking for investors, Robin Bhebe and Desmond Ratsoma’s original business partners had given up on their goal of starting a diamond cutting and polishing business. When the pair secured funding from Petra Diamond’s Tarorite Enterprise Development Fund, it was a game-changer for their company Outclass Crystallized Gems (OCG). “As well as capital, Tarorite also gave us a supply of rough diamonds at good prices. This solved two big problems that we faced in getting our company off the ground,” said Robin. After receiving funding in 2017, they had achieved their first sale by November of that year.
The support from Tarorite extended beyond capital and access to rough diamonds. OCG benefits from an ongoing business mentorship, with an experienced industry professional visiting Robin and Desmond every month to review their progress and advise them on commercial matters. This kind of support is a direct reflection of Petra’s belief that helping local businesses to grow and thrive is essential to creating lasting economic development in communities.
Paying it Forward – Sigathu Farm
Mercy Sigathu is a prime example of the ‘multiplier effect’ of helping local entrepreneurs to succeed. Mercy started her farming business in 2007, growing 40 tons of tomatoes on 2.5 acres.
Two loans from De Beers Group’s Zimele program helped her expand her farm to grow 200 tons of tomatoes on 18 hectares of land, employing 20 people during harvest season. Zimele is the Nguni word for ‘standing on your own feet,’ and the program supports those who dream of starting their own companies to become true entrepreneurs through mentorship, training and access to funding.
For Mercy, the program transformed her business and her life, “My employees inspire me to run a very productive business. If I fail myself, I know I fail them. I want the business to keep flourishing so they can put bread on their tables.”
Mecry Sigathu reaping the benefits of De Beers Group’s Zimele program on her farm.
Modern diamond mining makes an important contribution to the economies of diamond producing nations. The positive benefits of these types of investments are clear from the remarkable progress that has been made in countries like Botswana over the last 50 years.
In addition to local sourcing, DPA Members provide revenue to local and national governments through corporate taxes, royalties and dividends. In 2016, DPA Members paid more than US$3 billion to local and national governments Local administrations responsibly invest the revenue generated by diamond mining into infrastructure, healthcare, education, and social security, for example. The revenue provides stable income for local governments ensuring ongoing resources for programs and services.
Local communities also derive significant benefits from DPA Members’ investments in infrastructure development. DPA Members created US$42 million in benefits associated with infrastructure in 2016 (excluding the value of projects initiated in 2016 that will be completed over the next few years).
Building Botswana – Partnerships in Prosperity
Diamonds have helped to make Botswana one of the world’s great development success stories. Before diamonds were discovered in Botswana in 1967, the country had six kilometers of paved roads. It now has 7,000. Poverty has been cut in half and every Botswanan child receives free primary and secondary education. There are now more than 300 secondary schools in the country, compared with just three in 1966. Enviable GDP growth of 5.9% per annum for around 50 years since independence has seen GDP per capita surpass that of its peers and neighbors.
These developments are due, in part, to a long-term partnership between De Beers Group and the Government of the Republic of Botswana. Diamond production continues to support jobs and growth in the broader economy through local procurement strategies, development programs for small and medium sized enterprises and investments in capital works and infrastructure.
International Space Station
In 2016, Members paid more than
to fund key needs, like roads, schools and infrastructure.
That’s enough to fund the International Space Station for one year (estimated $3B) and nearly enough to operate the London Underground for one year (£2.581B or US$3.4B).
Fostering Prosperity in the World’s Diamond Cutting Capital
Surat is the eighth largest city in India and home to over four million people. As well as being one of the world’s fastest growing cities, Surat is one of its major diamond cutting and polishing centres. Across hundreds of workshops, Indian artisans employ traditional skills and craftsmanship to add value to every stone. This attention to detail underpins the country’s position as a world leader in the cutting and polishing of diamonds.
The diamond industry employs approximately one million people in India, making it incredibly important to communities and families across the country. The industry also contributes positively to society more broadly. Diamond polishing companies in India donate around 10% of their revenue to charitable causes, such as running schools, hospitals, orphanages and old-age homes.
The industry also supports long-term development by fostering skills and creating opportunities to help India’s next generation thrive. They do this by providing promising careers and good salaries that allow people to provide for their families and by helping them to access healthcare and education. In this way, the diamond industry delivers more than jobs and revenue, it also fosters the things that tie communities together and help them prosper.
An employee examines a diamond during the cutting and polishing process in Surat, India. Surat has embraced the latest and most sophisticated cutting tools, helping to create a robust industry that is one of India’s greatest success stories.
Diamonds are frequently located in remote environments where communities may lack basic services. As part of their commitment to creating a sustainable industry, Members recognize the responsibility they have not only to employees but also to the surrounding community. They work with communities to identify where social programs are needed and provide financial support to strengthen existing programs or develop new ones.
In 2016, Members contributed US$292 million in benefits related to social programs. Programs ranged from education and healthcare to training and skills development, charitable foundations and cultural events.
In 2016, ALROSA, for example, sponsored 5,300 sporting and cultural events, attracting roughly 220,000 people. The company’s Cultural and Sports Center organizes more than 130 clubs and classes for workers and their families.
Helping Children in Need
All children need love, care and a home. Unfortunately, some have family stressors that do not allow for this. Family issues can occur in big cities or small towns. Kharyskhal, which means ‘protective talisman’ in the local language of the town of Mirny in Yakutia, Russia, is a home for disadvantaged youth dedicated to helping these children.
Kharyskhal has helped more than 2,000 children over the past 20 years including finding 100 children new families. Over the years, the building housing Kraryskhal faced wear and tear, and it became apparent a new home would be necessary for the team to be able to continue offering these vital services.
Future Generation Foundation and ALROSA gifted a new building for the center in 2018. The new premises are designed to help with rehabilitation and include bright, spacious rooms, physical therapy and sports facilities and classrooms. The center can accommodate 30 children full time with additional outpatient services for children including group therapy, individual psychotherapy, group games and sports.
Residents of Mirny, Yakutia celebrate the opening of Kharyskhal, which was built with funding from ALROSA.
Education is one of the key areas in which DPA Members invest in local communities through their social programs. De Beers Group, for example, has founded schools that provide education to students from their mining operations’ surrounding areas, regardless of whether their parents are De Beers Group employees. In Tanzania, Petra’s Williamson mine owns and operates the Mwadui primary school which provides free education in English to 460 students.
The provision of healthcare services and programs are also a common feature of Members’ contributions to local communities, and mine hospitals are an important provider of primary health care. De Beers Group’s mine hospitals received 88,000 community visits in 2015, making up almost half of all visits to the hospitals annually. Petra’s Williamson Diamond Hospital in Tanzania pilots a number of health programs in conjunction with the Tanzanian government, including mother and child health, malaria prevention, voluntary counselling and testing and antiretroviral treatment for HIV/AIDS. Murowa supports five rural health centers which serve a population of roughly 50,000.
DPA Members partnership with the Botswana government now sustains a school system educating on average
children a year.
Education in the Arctic Circle
Surrounded by snow and winds, Abiy is a 500 person village in the Arctic circle. Recently, the village’s school celebrated its 105th anniversary with a new modern building, gifted by ALROSA.
"Since 1987, children have studied in five buildings. In the bitter cold they ran from building to building. Initially, the school was conceived as a hospital, and then converted into an educational institution," said Raisa Berezhnova, Abiy’s school director.
Construction began in 2016 and was carried out by the Future Generations Foundation. ALROSA allocated more than US$5 million to the project.
The new school is full of classrooms, sports facilities, dining and assembly halls. Foreign language, physics, chemistry and computer classes are offered. The spacious assembly hall has modern equipment and new musical instruments. Parents say that they could not have even dreamt about this.
"We are happy that our children can now study here. My daughter goes to school with great pleasure, and spends a lot of time there, playing the trumpet. Now she is dreaming to arrange an IT-hobby group with her friends," said a local resident Maria.
Children celebrate the opening of Aby school, which was built with funding from ALROSA.
Transforming Healthcare, Transforming Lives
In the past, people in the Mutambi community in Zimbabwe had to walk up to 12 miles to access medical care. All that changed with the setup of the Mutambi Clinic, built by Murowa Diamonds. Fitted with solar electricity to ensure the building and its equipment never lose power, the clinic is one of five rural health centers supported by Murowa to provide health services to the community. Together, they help about 50,000 local people to lead happier and healthier lives.
Enniah Bvenyura has had her life transformed after undergoing cataract surgery carried out by a Zimbabwean non-profit organisation and supported by Murowa Diamonds. “When I woke up, I was so surprised that I could see,” she said. “And, since then I haven’t had any further problems.” Enniah’s post-surgery care and reviews were undertaken at Mutambi Clinic whose cheerful staff made recuperation pleasant for her. The center focuses on the provision of improved health standards in a remote community.
A laboratory technician at work in a modern mining hospital that services the surrounding community.
Changing the Prognosis to Hope
Between 3 and 5% of children in the world have health limitations, including 6,000 children with disabilities in the Yakutia region. Around the world, families from remote regions often have to travel long distances to obtain the care their children require at rehabilitation centers. Not every child can withstand such a trip.
There is new hope for these families in Yakutsk, where ALROSA provided critical funding for the construction of a children’s rehabilitation center in 2014. At a total cost of US$12 million, the center now provides therapy for 3,000 children each year with sensory disorders, psychiatric disorders, and impairments to musculoskeletal system function. The center includes medical and recreation facilities, classrooms, and a hotel for those families that need to travel from other regions to receive care.
“Today my son waved his hand to me for the first time in his life,” three-year-old Sasha’s mother recounts joyfully. She and her son, who has cerebral palsy and hardly walks or talks, traveled a few thousand miles every year to receive care before the center opened.
A child plays with toys at the the Yakutsk Children’s Rehabilitation Center in Yakutia, Russia.
Modern Medicine on the Banks of the Lena
Zhigansk village is a remote village of 3,500 people on the banks of the Lena River in Yakutia, Russia. It can be hard to reach and many locals had to travel hundreds of miles to get to a doctor in freezing and stormy conditions.
ALROSA helped the community build a new medical center with modern equipment and increase its staff of doctors and nurses. Maternity, gynecology, surgery and children's surgical care departments were recently added. New equipment on-site includes defibrillators, echoencephalograph, x-ray and ultrasounds, endoscopy, lung ventilation and eye examination technology.
Diagnosis and treatment of patients in Zhigansk has vastly improved since the new hospital was built. Additionally, the number of hospital visitors has increased from 80 to 200 people a day with people now able to get quality medical care in their own community.
Zhigansk village’s medical center, which was built with funding from ALROSA.