Botswana Diamonds will start drilling process in September as variances on new Gope licenses have been identified. The Botswana Stock Exchange mining junior, who is under the care of John Teeling Diamonds, said in a statement indicating that several magnetic anomalies were revealed which can be caused by Kimberlite bodies.
“The work completed in the first half of 2015 has identified a clear anomaly and further drilling will be undertaken in the second half of 2015,” said the company which has joined hands with mining behemoth, Alrosa to explore in Orapa area.
The company said exploration is expected to cost $1 million (about P10 million).
According to the statement the KIMs (pyropes and picroilmenites) were discovered in all samples as two diamonds were found in the 2014 sampling. “Formation of dispersion haloes resulted from erosion of kimberlite bodies situated at various distances with the north west of the license having high concentration of KIMs.
However results also indicate that some KIMs have not travelled far. Further prospecting will focus on the northern part of the block in the second half of 2015,” reads the statement. The exploration work was conducted by Sunland Minerals, which is a joint venture between Botswana Diamonds and Alrosa. The fieldwork was carried out by a combined team of geologists on prospecting licenses PLs 206 to 210 in the Orapa region.
Alrosa has discovered 19 kimberlite mines in Russia producing 36.2 million carats in 2014, approximately 26 percent of the entire world’s production. Botswana Diamonds Executive Chairperson John Teeling said in addition to the next stage of exploration in Orapa, work would also begin in Gope on PLs 135 and 136 licenses where two magnetic anomalies have been identified.
“We have identified a very strong anomaly on PLs 210 which we will drill. The new ground that we have acquired in Gope also looks very promising,” said Teeling. He said a rapid programme of soil sampling and transient electromagnetic surveying will be conducted to confirm the anomalies and the precise drill targets.
Feasibility studies are ongoing with nine hole drilling programme targeting new kimberliites onPL186 license. Currently the diamond industry is faced with the challenge of depressed prices due to mismatch in rough and polished diamond prices.
This has resulted in some factories closing down due to squeezed margins in the diamond downstream sector.