London, England — MININGREVIEW.COM — 30 September 2008 – Emerging diamond producer DiamondCorp plc says its Lace project in the Free State has achieved its first period of positive gross profit, and forecasts an exciting year ahead for the company.
Announcing the company’s interim results for the six months ended 30 June 2008, DiamondCorp CEO Paul Loudon said: “Operations achieved our first period of positive gross profit, despite issues with power, bad weather and problems in the re-crush circuit.The year ahead is very exciting for DiamondCorp, as we join the very small group of diamond mining companies operating a long-life kimberlite resource.,” said Loudon.
The results revealed that 27 103 carats of diamonds had been recovered from Lace tailings re-treatment in the first six months of 2008, including a 34.84-carat non-gem diamond. Recoveries had averaged 6.1 cpht, and approximately 70% of diamonds recovered had been of gem quality.
-The statement added that 19 214 carats of gem diamonds had sold at tender in Johannesburg for revenue of £578 847 (R8.7 million) at an average price of US$61 (R488) per carat.
Gross profit from operations had amounted to £20 902 (almost R320 000), as opposed to zero in 2007.
Meanwhile, the company’s accelerated development of phase two of the underground mining at the Lace diamond mine is 14 months ahead of schedule. A new decline was advancing towards the Lace Satellite kimberlite pipe, and the company expected to start mining initial kimberlite by October, said the results statement.
The underground project will involve the mining of 13 million tonnes of Kimberlite down to the 855-metre level. Recovery at the planned rate of 4 000tpd (which is 1.6Mtpa) means a life of mine in excess of 20 years.