Three special diamonds of 180, 50 and 12 carats extracted at the Lulo mine, located in the municipality of Capenda Camulemba, northern Lunda Norte province are awaiting an auction for sale. The information was provided in Dundo, by the chairman of the Management Board of Sociedade Mineira do Lulo, Domingos Alfredo Machado, on the sidelines of the semi-annual balance sheet meeting on diamond production.
According to the official, the company does not have any diamonds in Stock, with the exception of the three awaiting auction, as the stones extracted in the mine are of high quality and always attract the market (buyers).
He made it known that Lulo’s diamonds cost two thousand dollars/carats. He said that in the first half the mine produced close to 15,000 carats of diamonds, representing 85 percent of the targets set for this year, which are 35,000 carats.
Future of the mine: On the other hand, the person in charge said that the mine only has two or three more years to explore, due to the reduced volume of gravel (reserves). “Our reserves have started to decrease and the situation is worrying because within two to three years we will run out of reserves to continue with our operations, which will force us to negotiate with Endiama to expand our area and continue with our operations”, he stressed.
He added that so far no new reserves have been found at prices that allow the mine to continue exploring after two or three years and that can cover operating costs. He informed that the mine made an investment this year, estimated at more than 10 million US dollars for geological-mining prospecting in the southern part of the Lulo River, with a view to discovering new reserves.
He said that the installation of a new washing plant was planned to sample a large volume of the reserves to be identified in order to assess the quality of the diamonds and to think about extending the useful life of the mine to five years. With a concession of 3,000 square kilometers, the Lulo mine, which currently employs 630 people, has made an investment valued at 38 million US dollars since 2018.
The mine has revealed, since the beginning of its exploration in 2010, a high potential for “quality and quantity”, having achieved in the first year of exploration the highest value, per carat, in the entire world, in the order of 2,985 dollars (3,005 euros).
Lulo is also the mine where the largest diamond found so far in Angola was extracted, weighing 404.2 carats, sold in May 2016 for US$16 million and which came to yield US$34 million, after being cut and transformed in jewelry. The consortium is made up of the Angolan companies Endiama EP (32%) and Rosas & Pétalas (28%), as well as the Australian company Lucapa Diamond (40%).
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