May 23, 2017

Lack of local expertise in diamond sector forces Botswana to hire expatriates

Due to lack of suitable qualified and experienced locals to take up skilled-worker categories in some areas within the partially state-owned Debswana, the government of Botswana hires foreign expertise. This is done to ensure that skills limitations do not become an obstacle to the sector’s development.

Botswana’s minister of mining, Kitso Mokaila told parliament this in the country’s capital while fielding questions from legislators in the country’s capital, Gaborone.

Botswana has legislated the Citizen Empowerment Policy, which besides providing financial assistance and capacity building to citizen-owned businesses and calls for “preferential treatment’ in the employment of locals.

Underscoring that this is done as a stop-gap measure, Mokaila said:

“Every function in the mine has succession plans which cover localisation of expatriate-held positions, and these are reviewed annually. Although we [at Debswana] continue to use expatriate labour, extensive efforts are under way to capacitate citizens through training programmes and worker secondments to international companies,” the Minister said.

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