Boteti Mining, now known as Lucara Botswana following a rebranding exercise that was launched on Monday this week, paid a to total $45.5 million (over P450 million) in taxes and royalties to government in 2017.
Lucara Botswana Managing Director Naseem Lahri said this during the unveiling of their new brand name. The company is a subsidiary of Lucara Diamond Corp, a Canadian company that is also listed on the Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE).
Lucara Botswana owns and operates Karowe Mine, formerly the AK6 Project, located within Orapa/Letlhakane Kimberlite.
Over the last few years, Karowe has become popular for producing high-quality rough diamonds such as the world’s second largest diamond – the 1,111 carats diamond – found in November 2015 and later named Lesedi La Rona.
The mine has also discovered several other exceptional diamonds like the Constellation. In a bid to align its local operations with its group identity, Lucara has decided to rename its 100 percent owned subsidiary Lucara Botswana.
Lahri told stakeholders that the name change is a sign of confidence that the group has on the local subsidiary. The company, Lahri said, will continue to invest in technology in order increase production and create more employment opportunities.
In 2014 the company introduced a major project upgrade, bringing in new Large Diamond Recovery (LDR) X-Ray transmissive technology (XRT) machines in order to process harder ore and improve the recovery of exceptional diamonds.
Since then, the company has reaped rewards of this investment, discovering exceptional stones such as Lesedi La Rona as well as others which were discovered in quick succession.
Lucara Diamond Corp CEO, Eira Thomas, who was speaking at the event, laid down future plans for the company, noting in her speech that they are an ambitious miner and very well positioned for growth. She said they see potential in the project and remain optimistic about the future.
At the moment, the mine’s open life span is expected to last until 2026, however, Thomas has said that they are positive that they will be able to expand its life span for a further period through underground mining.
Vice President Slumber Tsogwane commended the company for its participation in community projects in Boteti area where its Karowe Mine is situated.
“Government welcomes such initiatives and will continue to support organisations like Lucara Botswana for ploughing back into communities, especially in the drive to improve people’s livelihood,” Tsogwane said, when giving a keynote address at the event.
Tsogwane described the relationship between Boteti residents and Lucara Botswana as solid, characterised by amicable consultation, regional development and oneness. He encouraged the company as it changes its name to continue embracing the country’s ideals, contributing to the National Vision 2036 by achieving prosperity for all.
“Further, continue participating in sustainable economic development projects, especially within communities found around your production assets,” he advised. Tsogwane also applauded the company for its contributions in putting the country in good records in the international diamond space.