29 March 2023

Kagem delivers USD 5 million dividend to Zambia’s IDC

At a ceremony in Lusaka, Kagem Mining delivered a cheque for USD 5 million to the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) of the Zambian government, who own 25% of the emerald mine.

This is the second year that the Lufwanyama-based mine has paid a dividend to the IDC – proof that Zambia’s emeralds really are returning value to their host country and upholding the mission of Kagem and its parent company and majority owner, Gemfields: to ensure that coloured gemstones are a force for good.

“Kagem’s Zambian emeralds continue to attract a worldwide market, and it is this value that has enabled Kagem to pay this dividend for 2022. Our strategy of being a world-leading responsible miner and marketer of coloured gemstones is working and is generating considerable revenue and benefits for our host governments and the communities we operate in,” said Dr Sixtus Mulenga, Chair of the Kagem board. He added that Gemfields’ ability to adapt to “ever-changing” market circumstances, and the introduction of online bidding, have both been beneficial in generating strong returns.

This dividend payment comes on the heels of larger payments in mineral royalties and corporation tax from the mine to the government. These were the result of very strong sales at the four emerald auctions Kagem held in 2022, which set a new record for annual revenues, with USD 148.7 million raised overall. At the November auction, the 37kg Kafubu Cluster also set a record as the most expensive single emerald item ever sold by Gemfields.

It is clear that Kagem’s increasingly strong financial performance is bringing tangible benefit to Zambia. “It is our expectation that Kagem continues on this growth trajectory and continues to contribute to the growth of the Zambian economy,” said Beatrice Nkanza, board director of the IDC.

Additionally, the mine has put its profits towards improving health, education and livelihoods in the region – having committed USD 3 million to date towards initiatives such as upgrading a health clinic, training young farmers, funding university degree scholarships and building, upgrading and expanding local schools.

Gemfields credits its decade-long “model partnership” with the Zambian government as a key factor driving this robust performance.