Archive

  • Global rough-diamond production fell to 148.2 million carats in 2018, a decline of less than 2% from the 150.9 million carats recovered in 2017; however, a 4% rise in the average price per carat led to a 2.4% increase in the value of the world's rough diamond production, according to Kimberley Process (KP) data. Global diamond production was worth $14.47 billion in 2018 compared to $14.12 billion in 2017, as the average price per carat rose to $97.5 from $93.6. 

  • Gem Diamonds has sold its Ghaghoo mine in Botswana to Pro Civil, a local company, for $5.4m (R77m), bringing to an end Gem's struggles with the underground mine that never lived up to its expectations. Pro Civil, a company registered in Botswana, will acquire Gem Diamonds Botswana Proprietary and the Ghaghoo mine, which has been on care and maintenance since March of 2017.

  • President Mokgweetsi Masisi is said to have opened negotiations with Lucara Diamond Corp. for the government to buy and own shares in the company, reports The Botswana Gazette. Masisi reportedy met with Lucara CEO Eira Thomas at JCK Las Vegas, telling the newspaper, “I have proposed for Lucara to allow government to invest in the company,” adding that he will discuss with his cabinet and relevant authorities to agree on investing in Lucara.

  • Canadian miner Lucara Diamond has reported the best quarter in the history the Karowe mine in Botswana in terms of ore processing performance, lowering the cost of its operations and achieving the best results from its regular diamond sales in over a year. This was before the April recovery of the largest diamond to be mined at Karowe to date, an unbroken 1,758 carat near-gem-quality stone, which became the largest diamond recovered in Botswana and one of the largest diamonds in recorded history, superseding the spot held by the 1,109 carat Lesedi La Rona recovered from Karowe in 2015.

  • Lucara Diamond Corp. has recovered an astonishingly large diamond - 1,758 carats - from its Karowe Diamond Mine in Botswana. One of the largest diamonds in recorded history and the largest diamond ever recovered in Botswana, it may not be an immensely valuable clear white Type IIa beauty the miner is famous for - such as the 1,109-carat Lesedi La Rona or the 813-carat Constellation that fetched a record $63 million for a rough diamond - but it indicates the potential Lucara's state of the art XRT recovery circuit to detect and recover huge gems without breaking them.

  • De Beers Group reported a diamond production decline in the first quarter of 2019 driven by a 65 reduction in South Africa as the Venetia mine as it approaches the transition from open pit to underground mining. Venetia yielded only 0.4 million carats due to lower mined volumes, while the Voorspoed mine was placed onto care and maintenance in Q4 2018 in preparation for closure. De Beers' production guidance for 2019 remains unchanged at 31 - 33 million carats, subject to trading conditions.

  • Tiffany & Co has been expanding its workforce in sub-Saharan Africa as part of its drive to increase its transparency and raise ethical jewelry standards across the industry.

  • Botswana's state-run Okavango Diamond Company today (April 17) unveiled the polished result of what is said to be the largest blue diamond ever discovered in the southern African country, one of the world’s top producers. The 20.46-carat, oval-shape fancy colored diamond, fashioned from a 41.11-carat rough stone recovered on May 21 2018 at the Orapa mine, has been named "The Okavango Blue" in honor of the Okavango Delta, the country's wildlife-rich world heritage site. 

  • Botswana’s GDP per person is one of the top three in Africa and it’s off the back of diamond mining. There is no commodity in the world that means as much to a group of people in terms of lifting them out of poverty than diamonds in Botswana. In terms of revenue and the benefits to the people of Botswana, it can’t be understated. From the President to people living on the ground, they understand the importance of diamonds and the contribution to society.

    - Anglo American CEO Mark Cutifani, on the social benefit of diamond mining

  • Just about a year ago, the executive chairman of Botswana Diamonds John Teeling told us, "Instead of being an explorer, I would like to be a producer. We would like to get to production." According to yesterday's announcment from Botswana Diamonds, it looks as if he is going to get his wish: the junior miner said is on track to commence bulk sampling and become a diamond producer by mid-2019.

  • The Debswana Diamond Company (Debswana), a 50/50 joint venture between the Government of the Republic of Botswana and De Beers Group, has today (March 18, 2019) announced the commencement of the Cut-9 project to extend the life of Jwaneng Mine, one of the world’s most valuable diamond mines. The project will extend the life of Jwaneng Mine to 2035, and is expected to yield an estimated 53 million carats of rough diamonds from 44 million tonnes of treated material. It is called Cut-9 because it is the ninth cut, or expansion, of the mine.

  • Diamond-rich Botswana expects mineral revenues in the 2019/20 fiscal year to drop by 4 percent to 13.6 billion pula ($1.26 billion) due to a decline in royalties and dividends, a minerals ministry budget document showed last week. Botswana is heavily dependent on its diamond resources which, according to the World Bank, is responsible for 25% of the country's GDP, approximately 85% of exports earnings and about one-third of the government's revenues.

  • Media reports out of Africa are claiming an agreement (MoU) has been reached between the Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company (ZCDC) and the Diamond Trading Company (DTC) in Gaborone, whereby the latter would commence processing of Zimbabwe's diamonds. The diamond deal is said to be one of the agreements sealed during the high-level Zimbabwe-Botswana Bi-National Commission (BNC) summit held in Harare last week.

  • Despite a record year for the recovery of 'specials' (diamonds larger than 10.8 carats), including 33 diamonds in excess of 100 carats, Lucara Diamond earned its lowest revenue in six years due to the lowest average price per carat achieved in five years. Judging by their share prices, however, investors hardly seemed too concerned, as Lucara's stock price took an 8% dip following the announcement, only to regain half its loss back the next day.

  • Lucara Diamond Corp. has announced a 54% increase in the indicated resources of the South Lobe of its Karowe Mine in Botswana, as it undertakes its feasibility study for a potential underground operation. The significant increaase in the availability of diamonds, as well the increased contribution of the higher grade, higher value EM/PK(S) geological ore unit, where some of Karowe's most valuable diamonds, including the 1,109 carat Lesedi La Rona and the 813 carat Constellation were found, signfies a significant boost to the future of the mine.

  • UK-based and AIM and BSE listed exploration company Botswana Diamonds plans to raise more than $480,000 (£370,000) from investors, the company said Wednesday.

  • The De Beers Group has announced its production results for 2018 and Q4 2018, reporting that annual production increased by nearly 7% to 35.3 million carats, while a 4% decline in carats sold was offset by a higher average price per carat, leading revenues to rise 2% to $5.4 billion. They said the rise is production was due to a planned increase at the Orapa mine, although the group's output was in the lower half of the production guidance range of 35 to 36 million carats.

  • Lucara Diamond Corp. has recovered a 127 carat, top white gem diamond from its 100% owned Karowe Diamond mine located in Botswana. Since mining began at Karowe in 2012, a total of 129 diamonds in excess of 100 carats have been recovered, including an astounding 33 in 2018 alone. By way of comparison, Gem Diamonds, famous for its large diamond recoveries from the Letšeng mine in Lesotho, recovered a record 15 stones larger than 100 carats this year. Lucara's haul since 2012 includes 12 diamonds larger than 300 carats in size, of which 5 were recovered in 2018.

  • Lucara Diamond Corp. has completed its highly anticipated inaugural diamond sale through Clara Diamond Solutions, its digital sales platform for selling rough diamonds individually, based on polished characteristics and demand.

  • Discussions between the Government of Botswana and De Beers Group are already underway as the long-standing partners look to strike a new deal. The current 10-year agreement for the sorting, valuing and sales of Debswana’s diamond production (Debswana is a 50/50 mining joint venture between Botswana and De Beers) is set to expire at the end of 2020. Botswana is reportedly pushing for a larger stake in its "new marriage" with De Beers ahead of the negotiations for the next sales agreement, writes The Southern Times.

  • Junior miner Botswana Diamonds (BD) has acquired Alrosa's 50% share in the Sunland Minerals project for a "nominal sum". BD's 100% ownership of Sunland now enables a new investor to enter as a new joint venture partner, and they say that negotiations with this potential partner are at an advanced stage. The potential partner is said to be a large diamond producer with new ideas and keen to find new kimberlites in Botswana.

  • De Beers’ rough diamond production declined by 5% to 8.7 million carats in the third quarter due to planned reductions in mining volumes in Botswana and South Africa, the miner announced today. In Botswana, production at the Jwaneng mine declined by 6% to 5.7 million carats due to the planned processing of lower grade material. Production at the Orapa mine remained in line with Q3 2017 at 2.6 million carats.

  • CEO of Australia’s Lucapa Diamond Company, Stephen Wetherall, paid a visit to Antwerp recently, where The Diamond Loupe caught up with him. We encountered an optimistic CEO that is clearly excited about the future of Lucapa, and justifiably so. The growing miner operates, together with its partners in Angola, the highest-value and most promising alluvial diamond project in the world - the Lulo Diamond Project.

  • Sales at Botswana's state-owned Okavango Diamond Company (ODC) fell by 16 percent in the first half of 2018 to $260 million, said managing director Marcus ter Haar, citing a high comparison base against last year's record growth, as Reuters reports. The company sold 1.778 million carats in the first half of 2018 compared with 1.808 million carats in the same period last year.

  • Lucara Diamond Corp.'s Q2 results are a mixed parcel of sorts, as production and the recovery of 'specials' (+10.8 carats) increased while the company achieved softer prices, sold fewer exceptional stones and consequently achieved lower revenues than during the same period a year earlier. 

  • De Beers rough diamond production increased three percent to 9.0 million carats during the second quarter of 2018, "reflecting production increases to meet stronger demand as well as the contribution from the ramp-up at Gahcho Kué", the company today announced.

  • Botswana Diamonds (BOD) on Wednesday released an update on the company's Sunland Minerals exploration projects in the Kalahari Desert in Botswana - Sunland Minerals is a JV with ALROSA - noting they were encouraged with the latest results. The exploration company has completed its mineral sampling over the 8 previously discovered and announced high contrast geophysical anomalies in the Gope Region of the Kalahari Desert, with all 8 anomalies turning up kimberlitic indicator minerals ("KIMs") - 267 in total. Analysis of the KIMs concluded that the sources were likely to be local.

  • Lucara Diamond yesterday published the results of its Mineral Resource Update for its Karowe Mine in Botswana, which showed it would continue to yield a high grade of high quality diamonds for the remainder of its open pit life, and that underground mining was likely to continue until 2036. The remaining Indicated Mineral Resource for Karowe's AK06 kimberlite includes 7.9 million carats hosted in 57.85 million tons of ore at an average grade of 13.7 carats per hundred tons (cpht), with an average modelled diamond value of US$ 673 per carat.

  • Lucara Diamond Corp. has announced the appointment of Ayesha Hira as their new Vice President of Corporate Development and Strategy, and has already prompted speculation among analysts in stating her primary responsibilities will be, "investigating strategic growth opportunities including mergers and acquisitions." It is unclear whether the M&A in mind are looking upstream to mines and exploration projects, or downstream to something else entirely.

  • Lucara Diamond Corp. will be holding its first Exceptional Stone Tender of 2018, faciliated by tender house Bonas, on June 19. Viewings will take place starting June 10 in Gabarone, Botswana. The tender consists of 10 single stones ranging from 40.40 carats to 472.37 carats in size, including a 327 carat diamond, alongside other qualifying diamonds that have been recovered since the start of the year. Click through to view the catalogue of superior stones.

  • The Lerala Diamond Mine in central Botswana has been sold via an online auction for $8.1 million, a year after it was placed under provisional liquidation, according to a report from Reuters. The liquidator of the mine - which was held by Australian mining company Kimberley Diamonds and has been on judiciary management for the past year after it shut down due to a lack of funding and "weak market conditions" - put the entire operation up for sale in an online auction after its liquidators failed to secure viable offers.

  • John Teeling is the executive chairman of Botswana Diamonds PLC, one of the most prolific diamond exploration and project development companies that holds exploration licences in Botswana and South Africa. With 40 years worth of resources experience, he is often called a ‘serial entrepreneur’, and is involved in a number of other AIM exploration companies. Notably, he was the founder of African Diamonds, which discovered the AK6 mine in Botswana, a venture that eventually became Lucara's famous Karowe Mine. The Lucara Diamond Corp.

  • Lucara Diamond Corp recorded a loss of $7 million in the first quarter of 2018 amid a slight decline in revenues (-3%) and higher administrative costs. The Toronto-listed company operating in Botswana achieved revenues of $25.4 million compared to $26.1 million in the same period a year ago. They achieved $401 per carat, just under the $405 per carat from Q1 2017, at its first regular tender, yielding an operating margin1 of $170 per carat or 42% during the three months ended March 31, 2018.

  • Pangolin Diamonds Corp.,a diamond exploration company in Botswana, has recovered two diamonds and 100 positive kimberlite indicators from a 4 hectare soil sampling grid at the MAL 001 drill target located in the company's wholly-owned Malatswae Project. The recovery is the second positive result the junior miner has announced in the past two weeks, following the companies first diamond at the Jwaneng South Diamond Project, Botswana.

  • The liquidator of Kimberley Diamonds' Lerala Diamond Mine in Botswana, which has been on judiciary management for the past year after it shut down due to a lack of funding and "weak market conditions", will put the entire operation up for sale in an online auction after its liquidators failed to secure viable offers. It is a complete diamond mine, includuing the entire processing plant with its various crushers, 200tph conventional fines and course DMS plant, as well as it final integrated x-ray recovery house, hand recovery and grading unit.

  • Lucara Diamond Corp. has recovered a 327 carat, top white gem diamond from its 100% owned Karowe Diamond Mine located in Botswana. Eight diamonds greater than 100 carats have now been recovered at Karowe since the beginning of the year, including the 472 carat diamond announced earlier this month.

  • Lucara Diamond Corp. today announced the recovery of a 472 carat, top light brown gem diamond, the third largest diamond ever recovered from its 100% owned Karowe Diamond Mine located in Botswana. CEO, Eira Thomas comments, “In 2018, mining at Karowe is focused in the high value south lobe, which consistently delivers large, high quality diamonds in excess of 10.8 carats in size.

  • Pangolin Diamonds Corp. has signed an option agreement to earn up to a 75% interest in the diamondiferous AK10 diamond project located in Botswana, situated just 4 km from the now famous AK06/Karowe mine. “I am extremely pleased with this transaction", said Dr. Leon Daniels, President and CEO of Pangolin.

  • Debswana, the joint venture between the Botswana government and Anglo American’s De Beers unit, intends to expand its Jwaneng Mine extending its lifespan by eleven years, to 2035, to extract an additional 50 million carats.

  • Eira Thomas was recently appointed as the new CEO of Lucara Diamond Corp., replacing William Lamb, who oversaw the successful creation of the world-class Karowe mine in Botswana. Thomas brings more than 25 years’ experience in the mining industry to Lucara, including 16 years with Aber Diamond Corporation (now Dominion Diamond), where she played an integral role as a geologist at its initial discovery and ultimately became Director of the Board.