Paragon Diamonds’ Lemphane kimberlite project in Lesotho will lift the company’s status from explorer and developer to miner – and is expected to deliver some world-class large diamonds during its lifespan.

Of the top 20 diamonds in the world by size, a quarter of them have come from Lesotho, tracing back historically to the Letšeng diggings in the 1960s – a trend we expect Lemphane to follow,” says Paragon Diamonds’ executive chairman Martin Doyle.

Lesotho kimberlite deposits are recognised for their low grades but high average diamond values which, Doyle adds, are unlikely to pose any difficulties for the company. The project will not have to contend with many of the typical mining challenges in the country, such as high waste-toore ratios, problematic water supply or waste rock disposal problems, despite being located 2 600 m above sea level in the Lesotho mountains.

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