Miners in Botswana Unearth Diamond Believed to Be 3rd-Largest Ever Found
Botswana is Africa’s largest producer of diamonds.
The diamond, which weighs 1,098 carats, was unearthed two weeks ago by company Debswana and was shown to President Mokgweetsi Masisi Wednesday.
The Botswana government posted photos of the president being shown the stone on Twitter.
The diamond was found in the Jwaneng mine, around 75 miles from the country's capital, Gaborone, CNN reported.
"This is the largest diamond to be recovered by Debswana in its history of over 50 years in operation," Lynette Armstrong, Debswana Diamond Company's acting managing director, said to the BBC. "From our preliminary analysis it could be the world's third largest gem quality stone."
A price for the large diamond has not been set.
Debswana is a joint venture between the Botswana government and diamond giants DeBeers, according to their website.
“Debswana is a major contributor to the national economy of Botswana – contributing significantly to the gross domestic product, foreign exchange earnings and government revenue. It is one of the largest private sector employers, with over 5200 employees,” the company said in a statement on their website. “Debswana is also the biggest contributor to the De Beers Group rough diamond production.”
The Botswana government announced that they split the profits of diamonds they find with the country as they have in the past.
“President Masisi said as is the norm, proceeds from the diamond will be used to advance national development in the country,” the government said on Twitter. “He said Debswana should use this latest discovery as an inflection point, for the mine to use it's technology to realize more of these large discoveries.”
The newly unearth diamond is only slightly less heavy than the world's second-largest diamond, which was also found in Botswana in 2015, BBC reported. That diamond sold for $53 million.
The biggest diamond ever discovered was the 3,106 carat Cullinan diamond found in South Africa in 1905, the BBC reported.
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