DFP Definition of Words related to Diamond Mining in Liberia



Mainly an adult male worker who digs the land to find diamonds. He is hired by a miner. A digger is usually from a very poor family. His annual income varies from USD 0 to 500. A miner/employer provides a digger with two meals a day when hiring. However, it does not mean a digger is always paid. People call diggers “boys” in some mining communities in Liberia.


A person (male or female) who hires a digger. Some miners/employers dig by themselves. A miner/employer is not rich although s/he is better off compared to a digger. Her/his annual income varies from USD 0 to 1,000. S/he has to provide a digger with two meals a day when hiring.


A person who buys diamonds from a miner and sells them to a dealer/exporter. There are a few officially registered brokers in each mining community. They play a role to bridge diamonds to dealers/exporters whose number is very limited in Liberia. Their annual income varies from USD 5,000 to 10,000.


A person or company who has the permit to export diamonds and plays a role to distribute them to markets abroad. Their estimated annual income is more than USD 100,000. The number of officially registered dealers/exporters actively working is less than 10 in Liberia.

The conditions to register as a dealer/exporter is as follows:

  • Holding Liberian nationality. A foreign national can work as a dealer/exporter if s/he works under the partnership with a Liberian national;
  • Payment of annual license fee of about USD 25,000; and
  • Meeting the export quota of USD 100,000 per quarter. Even in case of not meeting the quota, s/he still has to pay 3% export royalty to Liberian government (USD 100,000 x 3% = USD 3,000).

Note: The above mentioned incomes are estimates based on the interviews conducted by DFP in Liberia in 2014.