Lucara Diamond to conclude “complete review” of Karowe capex and schedule in Q1

Lucara Diamond's Karowe mine, Botswana

LUCARA Diamond Corp. said it would conclude “a complete review” of its capital programme budget and schedule in the first quarter of next year.

Commenting on production, sales and cost guidance for its 2023 financial year it had allowed for capital expenditure of $105m, mostly on shaft sinking for its $547m expansion of the Karowe mine.

Expenditure would also be on construction of the project’s bulk air cooler, tendering the underground development contract and underground equipment purchases.

Production was expected to total 395,000 and 425,000 carats. Sales would total between 385,000 and 415,000 carats generating revenue of between $200m and $230m for the year, the company said.

Total operating cash costs would come in between $32.50 to $35.50 per ton processed.

In the nine months ended September 30, Lucara had generated $170.5m at an average operating cash cost per ton of $28.57.

Earlier this month, Lucara said it had signed a ten-year sales agreement with HB Trading in which it will supply the manufacturer with diamonds of 10.8 carats and above mined from its Karowe mine in Botsana until end-2032.

This builds on two years of diamond supply between the parties. Small refinements were made to the agreement. Diamonds contained in the deal typically comprise 60% to 70% of Lucara’s production annually.

In terms of the agreement, diamonds are sold to HB Group at prices based on the estimated polished outcome of each diamond. This is determined through state-of-the-art scanning and planning technology, said Lucara.