Shares in London-listed Botswana Diamonds (LON:BOD) climbed nearly 7.5% Tuesday after the company announced that it has begun exploration in the country’s Orapa region.
Work is being led by the miner’s joint venture partner, Russian giant Alrosa, and geologists have already started sampling activities on licenses PL260 and PL210, Botswana Diamonds said.
PL260 covers a 25 square foot area between the Karowe and Orapa diamond mines and contains three kimberlites that are known to contain diamonds. A soil sampling geophysics, diamond drilling and reverse circulation wide diameter drill programme is ongoing and will continue on the block until the end of April.
The holes that will be drilled have a target depth of 300 metres, and a 90-tonne bulk sample will be collected and then analyzed at a sampling plant, Botswana Diamonds said.
A separate team is operating at PL210, where targeted geophysics and soil sampling are designed to select drill sites for diamond drilling, due to commence in early April.
Botswana, which was overtaken by Russia as the world’s top diamond producing country in 2014, is grappling with aging mines, as well as power and water shortages.
Besides diamonds, Botswana also produces nickel, copper, coal and iron ore.