Skip to content
Menu

Angola inaugurates a massive new diamond mine

The 628-million-carat mine is the southern African nation’s largest diamond mine to date and has an initial annual processing capacity of 4 million metric tons of ore.

ARTICLE BY

PUBLISHED

READING TIME

Less than 1 minute Minutes

The 628-million-carat mine is the southern African nation’s largest diamond mine to date and has an initial annual processing capacity of 4 million metric tons of ore.

ARTICLE BY

PUBLISHED

READING TIME

Less than 1 minute Minutes

UPDATED: 21 Dec 2023, 11:05 pm

Angolan President João Lourenço inaugurated on Monday the country’s largest diamond mine, projected to produce 628 million carats, reports Lusa.

Stakeholders in the Luele (Luaxe) mine have poured US$635 million into the project so far. Angola’s largest mining company, Catoca, holds the largest stake with 50.5 percent. The remainder is divided between Angolan state diamond company Endiama, Rio Tinto joint venture Falcon, and two other enterprises.

The mine is due to start operations later this year with an initial processing capacity of 4 million metric tons of ore per year, eventually increasing to 12 million tons. Mining during the pilot stage has already yielded 5 million carats of diamonds.

[See more: Angola home to 36 of top 51 most critical world minerals: official]

The kimberlite (diamond matrix rock) of the Luele project, located in the northeast province of Lunda Sul, was first discovered in November 2013 during geological surveys by Catoca. The 60-million-carat Catoca mine, one of the largest diamond mines in the world, is also located in Lunda Sul.

Preliminary studies of the Luele kimberlite, extending 600 metres deep over an area of 105 hectares, indicate the deposit contains 647 million tons of ore. Within that massive quantity of igneous rock are the estimated 628 million carats of diamonds expected to be mined during the project’s 60-year lifespan. 

Global giant Rio Tinto makes its first foray in Angola with the Luele project, and has expressed interest in prospecting for other minerals. Angola is one of the most mineral resource-rich countries in the world, with diverse deposits that include many of the critical minerals key to global decarbonisation.

 

UPDATED: 21 Dec 2023, 11:05 pm

Send this to a friend