December 29, 2003

Regulation on diamonds security body passed / re-industrialisation delayed

The Angolan Government has passed the regulation of the Diamonds Security Body (CSD) as a way to adapt the current one to the demands of fighting the illegal trafficking of these precious stones. CSD is a dependent organ with the head of the Informations Services (Sinfo) and is assigned to follow up the activities developed by firms linked to the exploitation, buying and trading of diamonds, as well as the gathering of information concerned with the organ. It is also its incumbency to propose and set measures which guarantee the detection of groups and individuals who deal in prospecting and illegal trafficking of diamonds. Furthermore, it will also exert the control and follow up of the diamonds deposit and sums, as well as to present juridical and administrative measures which contribute for the stability of the sector. It is also in charge of assuring the production, assessment, classification, collection, and export of diamonds.

In a separate development, the implementation of the Re-Industrialization Strategy in Angola, conceived in 1994, has been postponed again, due to financial limitations caused by the State's General Budget revision for 2003. The revision made reflected negatively on the process of the industrial production, since the amount initially predicted Kz 272.795.309.00 billion, only 215.331.152.00 was made available. This situation led to a reduction in goods and services and the elimination of charges from investment. Thus, the projects that have been proposed and approved for implementation as outlined in the Public Investments Programme have not been carried out, for they were withdrawn from the expenditures of the department in charge of the project, during the revision of the State's Budget for 2003.

In the meantime it has also become known that Angola, Africa's third-largest oil producer and with US firms active in the Cabinda enclave, has been accepted into the group of African countries which have so called liberal trade terms with the US. The decision means that Angolan goods can be exported to America under a lower tariff regime than they faced before. However, the US has dropped Eritrea and the Central African Republic from the list of countries having these terms. (Angola Press Agency, Luanda/Rts)

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