Angola finds US$8m ‘pure diamond’

Business Reporter

THE Lulo mine, which Australian miner Lucapa owns in conjunction with Angola’s State-owned miner Endiama and Rosas & Petalas, has delivered its fifth diamond weighing more than 100 carat for the year, this time producing a 172.67-carat diamond.

The 172.67 ct diamond weighs about 35 grams and Lucapa says it is colourless and almost entirely devoid of impurities.

The diamond was recovered from ongoing alluvial mining operations at Lulo, about 630km east of the capital Luanda, and follows the recent recovery of a 104 ct diamond.

Lucapa reported on Monday that testing had confirmed the 172.67 ct stone as a Type IIa diamond.

The diamond is the sixth 100-ct plus stone recovered from Lulo to date. In February, Lucapa announced the recovery of Angola’s largest-ever diamond – a 404 ct Type IIa D-colour stone, which later sold for US$16 million.

The recent big gems have all been unearthed at Lucapa’s Block 8 alluvial area, which was flooded during the middle of the year in the Angolan monsoon. Operations resumed in recent months after the area dried out.

Lucapa chairman Miles Kennedy said while it was difficult to estimate a likely value for the “exceptional” diamond, it could fetch more than US$8 million.

“It’s definitely a very, very special stone and it will be worth a lot of money,” Kennedy said.

Lucapa has expressed interest in increasing its current 40 percent interest in the mine.

Australian mining company Lucapa says it has uncovered a huge diamond at its African mine in Angola.