BlueRock Diamonds has confirmed that the new crushing and screening operation at the Kareevlei mine in South Africa had been tested under full load and was fully operational and performing well.
BlueRock said it now had the capacity to produce sufficient material to supply the processing plant and also create stockpile for nightshift operations which, it said, significantly aided its ability to meet production targets as well as reducing running costs per tonne.
It said 24 hour production successfully began on 8 March.
The plant performed well and target tonnages appeared well within reach.
The company said it intended to work a five day, 24 hour production schedule with maintenance being carried out on Saturdays.
BlueRock also said that the extreme wet weather experienced during the first 10 weeks of 2017 was abating and behaving in a more normal pattern.
The diamondiferous kimberlite rock being processed was still higher in water content than normal but was treatable and being fed at approximately 80% of optimal rates.
The company said it had agreed the terms of a £150,000 unsecured loan facility with directors Tim Leslie and Paul Beck and Mark Poole, one of its major shareholders, in order to provide extra working capital required largely as a result of the delays caused by the unusually high rainfall that had been experienced in the Northern Cape over the last couple of months.
The loan, comprising of a maximum contribution from Tim Leslie and Mark Poole of £62,500 each and Segar Properties (Hyde Park) Limited, a company wholly owned by Paul Beck, £25,000, has a term of six months and a coupon of 10% per annum, payable at the end of the term.
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