BlueRock to Ramp up Production at KareevleiSeptember 30, 20
(IDEX Online) - BlueRock reported a first-half operating loss of $1.9m but revealed plans to more than double production at its Kareevlei mine, in South Africa.
The UK-based miner was forced to halt operations for seven weeks because of COVID-19, but mitigated losses through an agreement with brokers Bonas-Cousyns to sell its diamonds in Antwerp and achieve higher per-carat prices.
BlueRock said it sold one stone recently for $104,000 and has another valued $75,000 - evidence that the mine was producing higher-value diamonds.
It is now going ahead with plans for a second production line at Kareevlei (pictured) that had to be put on hold in March when the pandemic struck.
As a result it has revised its 2021 guidance to 34,000 to 46,000 carats, compared with a 13,800 to 18,000-carat forecast for 2020.
Chairman Mike Houston said: "When the onset of Covid-19 resulted in the closure of the mine in March 2020, we quickly revised our plans and implemented a 'reset and rebuild' strategy focused on minimising costs and further increasing production from our original expansion plans developed in January 2020.
"As part of this, we developed a new sales channel, which should enable us to achieve higher prices per carat, and a bridging financing facility to provide flexibility over the timing of our sales."