London, England — MININGREVIEW.COM — 24 July 2008 – International diamond mining group Petra Diamonds – which has operations in South Africa, Angola, Botswana and Sierra Leone – has announced promising developments from its exploration activities in Angola and Botswana.
In a statement issued here today, the company confirmed that on 13 May 2008 BHP Billiton’s interests in the Alto Cuilo and Luangue joint ventures in Angola had been transferred to Petra, which had taken control of both projects. It also revealed the following developments:
Alto Cuilo, bulk sampling and narrow diameter drilling are delivering exciting results, following the company taking full control of the exploration data and operational activities. An intensive and focused programme to test the near-surface crater rim has been completed, and Petra believes that the crater rim has the potential to contain substantial deposits of economic diamond-bearing material.
An early drilling campaign success at Luangue with kimberlite confirmation. As at Alto Cuilo, the Luangue work programme will focus on proving up the potential of enriched near-surface deposits, which have been shown by exploration at Alto Cuilo to be most likely to host economic mineralisation. The low-level, high-resolution “towed bird” aeromagnetic survey recently completed at Luangue identified 138 targets, and certain of these have been selected from the survey data for follow up.
In Botswana, the discovery of kimberlite BK 1 (south), bordering on Debswana’s rich Damtshaa mining licence area. The kimberlite was first intersected at a depth of approximately 40m, and some holes were stopped at a depth of 100m, still in kimberlite. It has been petro-graphically classified by a leading independent kimberlite expert, and has been rated as of moderate to high interest with respect to diamond potential.
Petra CEO Johan Dippenaar commented: “These promising results from our programmes in Angola and Botswana – where we have some of the world’s most prospective diamond exploration ground – are highly encouraging and firmly underpin Petra’s growth prospects. Our exploration projects, combined with our rapidly growing production in South Africa, support Petra’s fast growing status as a leading diamond company.”