A huge diamond, reportedly the third largest in the world, is now on display in the African country — Botswana. The stone weighs 1,098 carats and was shown to President Mokgweetsi Masisi in a ceremony at Gaborone, the capital of the country. This precious find was mined two weeks ago by the diamond firm Debswana, which is a partnership between global giant De Beers and the government of Botswana. The country is the largest producer of diamonds in Africa.
The company has not released an estimate of the potential cost of the diamond. In 2017, the second largest diamond, called Lesedi da Rona was also found in Botswana. It was sold for $53 million. Almost 80 percent of income sales reach the state through dividends, royalties, and taxes.
Mineral’s minister Lefoko Moagi said that the find came at an excellent time as diamond sales had slumped due to the pandemic. The precious stone, unearthed from the Jwaneng mine, has not as yet been given a name.
Lynette Armstrong, Debswana Diamond Company’s acting managing director said that it was the largest diamond to be recovered by the company in its over fifty years of operation. She also said that their preliminary analysis indicated that this could be the third largest gem quality stone in the world.
Ms. Armstrong added that they had not taken a decision on the sale of this “rare and extraordinary stone.” They would soon decide to sell it through De Beers or through the state-owned Okavango Diamond Company.
The Cullinan is the largest ever diamond in the world. In 1905, it was mined from the Premier 2 mine in Cullinan, South Africa and named after the mine’s chairman Thomas Cullinan, it was 3,106 carats. Owned by Queen Elizabeth II it’s the largest among the cut stones are displayed in the historic Crown Jewels at the Tower of London.