Written in the stars: Lucara Diamond sells rough diamond for a record $63million
Lucara Diamond Corp has sold its ‘Constellation’ diamond, weighing in at 813 carats, for an unprecedented $63million – a record for a rough cut diamond.
The Constellation diamond was found in the Karowe mine in Botswana, the same mine where the “Lesedi la Rona” diamond was also discovered in November 2015. The Lesedi la Rona is expected to bring up to $90million in a June auction this year.
Following the sale, the diamond mining company has entered a partnership with Nemesis International DMCC with Lucara keeping a 10% interest in the net profit of any future sales of the resultant diamonds.
William Lamb, President and CEO of Lucara Diamond Corp, said, "The sale of the 813 carat diamond is the highest price ever achieved for a rough diamond, breaking all records. This achievement solidifies our reputation in the jewellery industry as one of the most important sources of diamonds of the very highest quality."
"We look forward to the next stage of Lucara's development with the sale of the spectacular 1,109 carat, Lesedi La Rona diamond which will take place at Sotheby's London on June 29, 2016." he said.
Read the May 2016 issue of Mining Global magazine
Copper production from top ten companies to increase by 3.8%
Copper production from the world’s top companies is set to increase by up to 3.8% this year, following a fall of 0.2% in 2020, GlobalData analysis reveals. Last year’s marginal slump saw production drop to 11.76 million tonnes (Mt).
The initial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on mining operations was immense, however, six of the ten largest copper producers succeeded in increasing output last year. In 2021, copper production from the top ten copper companies is expected to bounce back, rising by up to 3.8%, to reach 12.2Mt, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.
The highest increase in copper production was by Canada’s First Quantum, which, despite all the challenges, reported 10.4% growth in 2020. The company’s Sentinel mine in Zambia and Cobre Panama were key contributors to this growth. While the latter remained under care and maintenance between April and August 2020, it delivered record production levels during the subsequent months.
Codelco, the world’s largest producer of the red metal used in electric vehicles, also bucked the trend.
Vinneth Bajaj, Associate Project Manager at GlobalData, commented: “Despite Codelco reporting over 3,400 active cases during July 2020, the company achieved 1.2% growth in its production in 2020. The company implemented a four-phase plan, as part of the COVID-19 measures, to ensure the health and safety of its employees, while also avoiding any significant impact to its copper output.”
Although the overall impact was minimal, declines in production were observed from Glencore (8.2%), Antofagasta (4.7%), BHP (3.9%) and Freeport McMoRan (1.3%). Reduced operational workforces due to COVID-19 measures, lower ore grades and production halts due to maintenance were the key disruptors to output during 2020.
The move towards electric vehicles and clean energy from renewables sources such as solar panels and wind turbines has driven the copper price to all-time highs. Copper has been among the best performers over the last month where metals ranging from aluminum to iron ore have surged to their highest prices in years. The rally is being fueled by stimulus measures, near-zero interest rates and signs that economies are recovering from the global pandemic.