The CEO of Canada-based Lucara mining firm, which discovered the world's second-largest diamond in Bostwana this week, said the gem was "too big" to be scanned by the company's onsite equipment and would be sent to Antwerp in Belgium for closer inspection and evaluation. CEO William Lamb has said that many potential buyers have shown interest in the diamond.
According to The Guardian, Lamb said: "It was impossible to price the diamond at this stage." The 1,111 carat gem quality diamond was recovered from the south lobe of Lucara's Karowe Mine. It is likely to be auctioned once its price has been determined, but analysts say that would depend on a number of factors such as its cutting, colour and shape.
"Valuation will depend on potential inclusions, how it would behave in cutting, [its] optimal shape as well as final colour. All these things will need to be evaluated prior to bidding," Kieron Hodgson, a commodities and mining analyst, told AFP. Hodgson added that the diamond had "the potential to be one very expensive diamond".
Weighing in at 222gm, the precious stone is second only to the 3,106-carat Cullinan diamond, which is the largest diamond ever found. The gem is said to be a Type IIa diamond like the Cullinan and the famous Koh-i-Noor. This category of diamond is very large in size, rare to find and is almost devoid of any impurities.
The diamond measures 6.5cm by 5.6cm by 4cm and is said to be the largest ever to be recovered in Botswana. It is also the largest to be found in more than a century. The mining firm also announced about the recovery of an 813 carat stone and a 374 carat diamond from the same mine earlier this week.
"The significance of the recovery of a gem quality stone larger than 1,000 carats, the largest for more than a century, and the continued recovery of high quality stones from the south lobe, cannot be overstated," Lamb said in a statement.