Opposition to Gov’t Bailout of Teemane Manufacturing Co.February 17, 15
(IDEX Online News) – Tshekedi Khama, the Botswana Environment, Wildlife and Tourism minister, has expressed his opposition to calls for a government bailout for diamond cutting firm Teemane Manufacturing Co.
Khama told the Yarona FM radio station that the bailout would fail to achieve its intended purpose. “Otherwise government will have to bail out any company that is struggling financial and this is not sustainable,” reported l'Agence de Presse Africaine (APA).
The minister suggested that the firm should approach De Beers for assistance.
The company, which operated for more than 20 years, employed 320 workers. It said it was closing its doors owing to “commercial pressures,” including low polished prices.
Bloomberg.com reported earlier this month that the company has encountered increased competition since a 2006 agreement between the Botswana government and De Beers that guaranteed supplies of stones to local cutters and polishers. “The number of such companies operating in the world’s largest diamond producer has since risen to 20 from four, employing a workforce of about 3,700.”