Due to the predominant Archaean geology present in Zimbabwe, most of the country is being actively explored for diamonds. To date, Zimbabwe has only had one commercial diamond mine, River Ranch situated in southern Zimbabwe, close to the border with South Africa. However, following damage caused by cyclone Helena, the mine has remained closed. Although numerous kimberlites have been located in Zimbabwe, very few have been economically viable to date. However, developments by Rio Tinto could see Zimbabwe becoming a diamond producer again.
Rio Tinto Zimbabwe (RTZ) and Rio Tinto are going ahead with the development of the Murowa diamond prospect located near Zvishavane in southern Zimbabwe. A mining reserve comprising three kimberlite pipes containing 16.5 Mt grading at an average of only 0.9 cpt has been outlined. At a planned production of 500 000 t/year, the mine could produce 450 000 ct/year. Capital expenditure for the mine will cost in the region of $13.5million and production is expected to start in the second half of 2005. Rio Tinto has joined a consortium comprising Trans Hex International (subsidiary of the Trans Hex Group) and local Somabhula Explorations to prospect for kimberlites along areas proximal to the Limpopo River, east of the border town of Beit Bridge.
Alluvial diamonds are periodically extracted from the Somabhula area north of Bulawayo.
Consolidated Trillion Resources and Cratonic (a wholly owned subsidiary of Delta Gold) are evaluating the 4 ha Ngulube kimberlite located in southern Zimbabwe. The commercial potential of the pipe is being assessed after numerous micro diamonds were recovered from bulk samples.
African Consolidated Resources Plc, Bubye Minerals (Pvt) Ltd :[ Add More ]
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