De Beers sells its Snap Lake diamond mine in Canada up for sale after suspending operations on the unprofitable mine remaining December, a spokesman spoke of on Friday.

De Beers has hired bank of Montreal (TO:) to market the underground mine in Northwest Territories, spokesman Tom Ormsby spoke, however he did not supply fiscal particulars.

Snap Lake, which has not made money due to the fact construction begun in 2008, produced 1.2 million carats ultimate year and become firstly deliberate to function except 2028.

In June, De Beers Canada got approval to flood the mine tunnels, reducing preservation charges, beneath a revised suspension plan. The flooding has not yet came about but planning work continues.

“earlier than we get into that specific flooding of the mine … we notion it might be prudent, actually, to look if there became an interest,” Ormsby pointed out.

De Beers Canada spent C$2.2 billion ($1.67 billion) on mine construction and operation as much as year end of 2014.

If no certified buyer is discovered, De Beers Canada can also proceed with the flooding plan within the fourth quarter, Ormsby said.

De Beers, 85 percent owned by way of Anglo American and 15 % with the aid of the Govt of Botswana, has been harm with the aid of waning demand and slumping fees within the diamond trade.

Snap Lake become De Beers’ first mine developed backyard Africa and is 220 kilometers (137 miles) northeast of Yellowknife, the capital of the Northwest Territories.

Attainable most effective with the aid of air and an ice road that operates for 2 months of the 12 months, the mine changed into plagued with groundwater issues from extracting diamonds below Snap Lake. It employed 595 staff and 200 contractors earlier than its suspension.

The level of interest is doubtful, mentioned one felony source time-honored with the rely, with a different adult including that the mine’s far flung region, technical challenges and excessive reclamation liability have diminished its luster.

The sources mentioned competencies buyers might include Stornoway Diamond Corp (TO:), which is poised to open Quebec’s first diamond mine, and Peregrine Diamonds Ltd (TO:), which is exploring for diamonds in Canada’s Arctic and is backed through high-profile miners Eric and Robert Friedland.

different diamond miners working in Canada’s Arctic include Rio Tinto Ltd (L:) and Dominion Diamond Corp (TO:).

De Beers Canada also operates the Victor diamond mine in Ontario, which is set to close in 2018 except a ramification proceeds. it’s additionally building the Gahcho Kue diamond mine within the Northwest Territories.

Gahcho Kue, 49 % owned by using Mountain Province Diamonds Inc (TO:), is anticipated to birth construction in the next month with annual output averaging four.5 million carats.

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