Lucapa delivers diamond upgrade
20th March 2020
Resources Rising Stars
Lucapa Diamond Company has delivered a 25% increase in resources to more than 100,000 carats at its Lulo alluvial diamond mine in Angola, delivering the largest resource estimate in the project’s history (reports MiningNews).
That's after mining depletion for 2019 of 19,000ct at the 40%-owned Lulo operation.
The miner said the boost to 100,700ct came from the increased understanding of its resources following an extensive 6100-hole auger drilling and pitting program that removed some lower value areas previously included in resource estimates, increasing grade and value of the remaining resources.
The impact of sales over 2019 also delivered average values above its 2018 estimates.
Cape Town-based Z Star Mineral Resource Consultants models that the average cost of Lulo diamonds is now 14% higher, up from US$1420/ct to $1620/ct.
Lucapa had already claimed Lulo was one of the highest average return per carat alluvial diamond producers in the world.
Lulo is now in its sixth year of commercial production, and still has around five years of remaining production at current rates.
Overall sales of Lulo diamonds to date total $168 million at an average price per carat of $1900/ct, with 14 +100ct stones recovered to date.
"Together with the positive diamond marketing reforms introduced in Angola in 2019, the latest increase in both in-situ resource carats and average modelled price supports the investment made by the Lulo partners to expand diamond production and cash generation from 2020," managing director Stephen Wetherall said.
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