Putin launched a new diamond deposit
Alrosa has started commercial diamond production at Verkhne-Munskoye Diamond Field in Yakutia. The new diamond field will operate for at least 20 years, ensuring reliable diamond production and providing workplaces for local residents.
Vladimir Putin, the President of the Russian Federation, and Anton Siluanov, the First Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister of Finance of the Russian Federation, took part in the official ceremony dedicated to start of mining operations. The first industrial explosion at the facility was set off by Aysen Nikolaev, the Head of the Sakha Republic (Yakutia), and Sergey Ivanov, Chief Executive Officer of ALROSA Group.
Preparations for mining operations at Verkhne-Munskoye Diamond Field started in 2015 and lasted for 3 years. During this period, overburden removal was made, rotation camp and infrastructure facilities were constructed, special equipment was designed and purchased.
The project unique feature is that Verkhne-Munskoye Diamond Field is about 170 kilometers far from the existing infrastructure facilities (processing plant) of Udachny Mining and Processing Division (MPD). Construction of a new processing plant on site would make the project unprofitable. So, one of the key stages of the preparations for mining operations was construction of a service lane that connected Verkhne-Munskoye field with Udachny MPD facilities.
Verkhne-Munskoye Diamond Field is the largest investment project of Alrosa Group. At the stage of preparations for mining operations, the investment amount has reached about 16 billion rubles, and the total estimated investment amount for the whole period of the field development is thought to be about 60 billion rubles is including its maintenance capex till 2042.
Verkhne-Munskoye Diamond Field will produce about 1.8 million carats of diamonds a year and its reserves are enough to continue mining operations for more than 20 years that is till 2042.
Sergey Ivanov, Chief Executive Officer of Alrosa Group said, “The start of mining operations at Verkhne-Munskoye Diamond Field is a great event for our company and our Northern industry-based towns. Verkhne-Munskoye field will compensate the decrease in production at other facilities; in particular, it will replace the retired capacities of Mir. Thanks in no small part to this project; Alrosa Group will be able to increase its production volume next year.”