Debmarine Namibia, a joint venture between diamond miner De Beers and the Namibian government, has approved the construction of a new custom-built diamond recovery vessel, which will become the seventh such vessel in Debmarine’s fleet.
The vessel, which will be built at a cost of $468-million, will start production in 2022 and is expected to add about 500 000 ct/y of production capacity to Debmarine Namibia’s output. This represents an increase of about 35% on current output levels.
De Beers parent company Anglo American’s CEO Mark Cutifani on Thursday said the addition of this custom-built vessel would bring numerous benefits in terms of De Beers’ production profile by value and volume, the technologies that can be deployed from the outset to deliver greater efficiency and productivity, as well as sustained economic benefits for Namibia.
The “highly attractive” investment offers a three-year payback, a more than 25% internal rate of return and an earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation margin of more than 60%.
De Beers CEO Bruce Cleaver pointed out that some of the highest quality diamonds in the world are found at sea off the Namibian coast.
“With this investment, we will be able to optimise new technology to find and recover diamonds more efficiently and meet growing consumer demand across the globe.”Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor Online