This report focuses on the Mining Sector in Botswana and includes information on the state and size of the sector, trade statistics, corporate actions and expansion and investment developments. There are profiles of 26 companies including the country’s largest diamond producer and largest private sector employer Debswana, and Botswana Ash, the only producer of soda ash and salt. Other profiles include Khoemacau Copper Mines, which is building a copper and silver mine, Lucara, which is expanding its Karowe mine, and prospectors such as Kukama and Efora Energy.
The Mining Sector in Botswana
Mining is significant contributor to Botswana’s GDP, and minerals comprise almost 80% of export earnings. In 2018, Botswana was the world’s second largest diamond producer by value and volume, after Russia, according to the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme. The country has large soda ash, coal and diamond reserves. Botswana’s mining sector is dominated by diamond mining, with Debswana Diamond Company being the largest producer by far. Other minerals produced are aggregate, brickmaking clay, coal, dimension stone, gemstones, gold, salt and soda ash.
Several exploration companies are working in the Kalahari copperbelt, while others have coal, coal bed methane, diamond and uranium projects. Botswana continues to be ranked highly in Africa on policy, investment attractiveness and its tax regime. In 2019, the second largest diamond ever found was discovered in Botswana. A number of companies are investing in expansion and development of diamond, coal, copper and silver mines.
While diamonds remain the largest and most important mineral for Botswana, small amounts of coal are produced, largely for domestic consumption, with the majority used for power generation. The majority of Botswana Ash’s soda ash production is sold to glass manufacturers who use the mineral to reduce the melting temperature of silica, which decreases their energy requirements.