Lucapa’s Mothae diamond mine in Lesotho is back in business.
The commercial recovery of diamonds is underway at ASX listed Lucapa Diamond Company’s Mothae kimberlite diamond mine in Lesotho. Mothae, in which the Government of Lesotho holds 30%, has recently installed a new 1.1 million tonnes per annum (Mtpa) treatment plant.
According to Stephen Wetherall, managing director at Lucapa, the company is on track to become one of a few listed diamond companies globally with production from more than one operating mine.
“The high-quality nature of this production from Lulo and Mothae will also enable the group to further its value-enhancing downstream strategy through partnerships with global diamantaires, where discussions are well advanced,” says Wetherall.
The new Mothae plant incorporates advanced diamond recovery technology, including two XRT diamond recovery modules designed to recover large and rare Type IIa diamonds ahead of the secondary crushing circuit, therefore reducing potential diamond breakage and improving the recovery of unbroken large stones. The plant will be progressively ramped up to its 1.1Mtpa nameplate capacity following the implementation of a second plant operating shift.
Production from the Mothae kimberlite mine is intended to complement that from Lucapa’s high value Lulo mine in Angola (Lucapa 40% and operator), which produces the world’s highest average USD per carat alluvial diamond production.