Since 2007, following the collapse of the MIBA (Societe miniere de Bakwanga
)-a state-owned diamond company and the former main state employer in Eastern Kasai--and with the mining boom in South Katanga since the early 2000s, many Kasaians have returned to the mining cities in South Katanga, particularly Kolwezi, where most of the mining sector re-launch has taken place.
Bonzola de Bakwanga
, au Congo-Belge, repetait serieusement a ses
After the severe downgrading of the DRC's main revenue earner, the giant Gecamines parastatal, (output of copper dropped from half a million tons in the mid-80s to only 30,000 tons last year), Miniere de Bakwanga
(MIBA), the company's diamond-producing arm and the last profitable mining operation in the country is now in trouble.
In the capital of Eastern Kasai, Mbuji-Mayi, Congolese wildcat diggers are furious because they face the competition of armed Zimbabwean soldiers who mine gems even inside the concessions of the Miniere de Bakwanga
A longstanding agreement which had guaranteed De Beers a monopoly on the purchase of diamonds produced by the Miniere de Bakwanga
(MIBA), was abruptly cancelled.
The marketing agreement with Zaire's main company, the Miniere de Bakwanga
(MIBA) has been renewed, but in 1994, MIBA's output amounted to 4.8m carats as against 9.5m in 1990.
$53m were produced by the Miniere de Bakwanga