As part of the one million tonne per year expansion project of its Kareevlei diamond mine in Kimberley, South Africa, the Aim BlueRock Diamonds-listed diamond producer has successfully mined all key areas of its new plant producing at rated capacity on a short cycle basis during the hot commissioning phase.
During the process, the mill team made minor modifications to the processing circuit on both lines to accommodate higher ore volumes and blends to provide the economies of scale to transform the mine into a highly cash-generating asset.
As reported in October, BlueRock planned to continue operating its old plant until it was satisfied that the first line of the new plant would operate at rated capacity on a sustainable basis.
With this configuration, volumes in excess of 3000 tonnes per day were achieved, which would be sufficient to meet BlueRock’s target of one million tonnes per year.
Executive Chairman of BlueRock Mike houston says the company remains confident in meeting its target goals with 19,362 ct production so far in the year and the availability of an additional seven weeks of production by the end of the year.
In addition, the switch to the operation of the two new lines is expected to further increase volumes and reduce costs to target levels.
Considering the volumes BlueRock achieves using the current setup, the old plant will now operate along Line 1 until the new plant is fully debugged to increase production levels over the next two months.
This ensures both that the company is well positioned to meet the 22,000 ct to 26,000 ct forecast produced by the end of the year, while increasing cash inflows in a situation where BlueRock carefully manages cash flows. limited cash resources having recently repaid half of the convertible loan originally issued in 2014. It stood at £ 462,500 under its revised agreed terms.
“Significant benefits in terms of costs and operational efficiency are expected once the new plant is operating at full capacity,” adds Houston.