The recovery of the 442-carat stone comes on the heels of the 163-carat yellow type I diamond recovered in June 2020 and the recovery of 60-carat type I light yellow, the 87-carat type II D colour, the 66-carat type II D colour and the 23-carat type II D colour white diamonds at the beginning of April 2020.
Letšeng Diamonds CEO, Mr. Kelebone Leisanyane, commented on the recovery: “Letšeng Diamonds is grateful to the Government of Lesotho for showing confidence in the mining industry during these difficult times of the COVID-19 pandemic and for having designated mining as an essential service in an effort to keep the wheels of the economy rolling.
“The recovery of this remarkable 442-carat diamond, one of the world’s largest gem-quality diamonds to be recovered this year, will contribute immensely to the fiscus in the form of taxes, royalties and dividends. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this diamond will also be used to fund a special community project, as agreed with the Government of Lesotho in the new mining lease agreement. It is also important to note that Letšeng Diamonds will continue to maintain strict adherence to health and safety precautions during the global COVID-19 pandemic.”
The Mine processes ore from two kimberlite pipes, the Main and the Satellite. While both pipes bear extremely low-grade ore, averaging under two carats per hundred tonnes, Letšeng Diamond Mine is the highest dollar per carat kimberlite diamond Mine in the world.