The industrial sector is dominated by mining. The manufacturing industry is limited and often operated on a smaller scale. The state is part owner of some of the larger companies. At the same time, the authorities actively subsidize and encourage small businesses, especially to stimulate the growth of new industries.
The four diamond mines are exploited by the company Debswana, which is jointly owned by the state and the South African group De Beers. Debswana, one of the world’s leading diamond producers, has over 6,000 employees. Several other players have been allowed to look for diamonds but so far no mining has been initiated on a larger scale.
Diamond processing has previously been done mainly abroad but some have now been placed in Botswana. This creates jobs and income from the diamonds in one way (see Finance).
The manufacturing industry employs about a tenth of the formal employees, but accounts for less than 4 percent of gross domestic product (GDP). Important areas are meat processing, construction and manufacturing of textiles, clothing and beverages.
The industrial sector has grown more slowly than the rest of the economy. The development is hampered by a limited domestic market, a lack of skilled labor and strong competition from South Africa. The State Botswana Development Corporation has supported over 100 Botswana companies for several decades.
- COUNTRYAAH: List of top trading partners of Botswana. Includes countries that imported most shipments from and exported most goods to the country.
Opposition parties come together
The opposition party BCP announces that it joins the broader opposition movement UDC ahead of the 2019 elections.