In a statement released on Tuesday, diamond-mining giant Alrosa said that it found a “unique” diamond weighing 145.44 carats (29 grammes/1 ounce). According to specialists at Alrosa’s Diamond-Sorting Centre, the gem could fetch up to 1 million USD (30.13 million Roubles. 750,000 Euros. 640,000 UK Pounds). Alrosa said that it discovered the clear octahedral-shaped diamond (with a yellowish cast) late last month in Yakutia; it measures 35 x 20 x 26 millimetres (1.4 x 0.8 x 1 inch). Last September, Alrosa found an even larger gem-grade diamond at another of its Yakutia mines, which it valued at more than 1.5 million USD (45.2 million Roubles. 1.125 million Euros. 960,000 UK Pounds), and said that it could split it into several high-quality cut diamonds.
The latest find comes from deep within the Yubileynaya diamond pipe at Factory No 14 of Alrosa’s Aykhalsky facility. In October, the same pipe yielded an enormous industrial-grade diamond weighing 888.15 carats (178 grammes/6.25 ounces). The company said that the unclear (greyish-green in hue) stone was the fourth-heaviest diamond ever produced in Russia. Russia has the largest known diamond deposits in the world and Alrosa accounts for 97 percent of Russian production. The principal regions of production are Yakutia (AKA Sakha Republic), Perm, and Arkhangelsk. Alrosa accounts for 25 percent of the world’s diamond production. In 2011, the company produced 34.6 million carats (6,920 metric tons/7,628 US tons) of diamonds, which fetched 4.45 billion USD (134.1 billion Roubles. 3.3 billion Euros. 2.85 billion UK Pounds). Experts expect that the figures for 2012 production, not yet fully calculated, should total about 34.4 million carats (6,880 metric tons/7,584 US tons), which would garner 4.5 billion USD (135.6 billion Roubles. 3.4 billion Euros. 2.9 billion UK Pounds).
12 February 2013