– Do you know that Botswana is the country with the most elephant specimens in the world?
It is said that there are about 130,000 elephants, a third of all living in Africa. You can see many of them in national parks and reserves, but you can also find them very close to the road. In fact, Botswana is the least populated country in the world and you will often hear people say, “There are more elephants here than people!”
The elephant is a very characteristic animal of Southern Africa. His majesty makes him one of the Big Five you must see during your trip to Africa. If you want to know more, we recommend that you read the following article.
The search for ivory, poaching and climatic causes are causing a decrease in specimens of this animal. For example, we all remember 2012 when the King of Spain came out with a shotgun and a dead elephant as a trophy. He was hunting elephants in Botswana, an activity that can cost up to 30,000 euros.
Meanwhile, in the year 2020, a new came out in the media commenting on the deaths of more than 300 elephants in the Okavango Delta. After many assumptions, the cause of their death was discovered: the contamination of the water they drank with cyanobacteria, bacteria that are potentially toxic when the temperature rises (climate change is an exponential multiplier). For more information, click here.
– The most valuable diamond mine in the world is in Botswana
The sale of diamonds is one of the main economic sources in Botswana, precisely with the management of national parks and tourism. It represents 40% of the total value of GDP. Botswana is the world’s second largest producer of diamonds, just behind Russia.
Here we find the most valuable diamond mine in the world. This is the Karowe mine, located south of the Makgadikgadi salt flats, and one of the most famous large diamond mines was found there. In 2019 they found the second largest diamond in the world, which is approximately the size of a tennis ball and weighs 1,758 carats. Think that these pieces have been sold in the market for a lot of money. For example, a diamond found in the same mine in 2015 was sold for 53 million euros; and the Constellation diamond they also mined in Karowe was auctioned off for 63 million euros!
Currently, they are still looking for different points to extract diamonds from the country. In the 1980s, they found them in the Kalahari Desert Reserve, which is why they expelled most of the San population living in the area; turning his expulsion into an illegal and unconstitutional act. If you want to know more about the conflict and the San population, we recommend that you read the following article.
There are forecasts that in 20 years the country will run out of diamonds, which will cause a setback for the government’s economy. Therefore, they are trying to diversify this dependence with the textile industry, jewelry or financial services; within others. However, it is unclear whether these efforts to diversify the economy will have the expected results to reduce the impact of falling diamond revenues in the near future. This is one of the main challenges facing Botswana in the coming years to maintain its stability.