Russian Miner Unearths First Rare Large Coloured Diamond

Alrosa, the Russian group of diamond mining companies that specialise in exploration, mining, manufacture and sale of diamonds, recently recovered the first large coloured rough diamond at its new Verkhne-Munskoye deposit in Yakutia.

The find, a bright yellow gem-quality diamond weighing 17.44ct was “unearthed” in mid-February from the Zapolyarnaya kimberlite pipe, a part of the Verkhne-Munskoye deposit, which started up in October 2018. 

“The transparent crystal is the first rough diamond with bright colour found at the Verkhne-Munskoye since it was launched in 2018,” said Evgeny Agureev, deputy chief executive of of Alrosa. 

“According to the Gemological Institute of America, only one in 10,000 diamonds has a fancy colour.” The company will assess and evaluate the latest find in detail, he added.

"We hope this deposit will give us more large and interesting discoveries in future.”

Most of Alrosa's natural colour rough diamonds are mined in the Arkhangelsk region and in the north of Yakutia and it said that gem-quality coloured diamonds amount to less than 0.1% of the company's overall output.

The coloured diamonds will be sent to Diamonds of Alrosa, the company’s cutting and polishing division. “This is where such unique pieces as the Fancy Vivid Yellow Firebird diamond 20.69ct [pictured below] and the Spirit of the Rose 14.8ct Fancy Vivid Purple-Pink diamond were produced,” an Alrosa spokesman said.

Sources for the recovery of gem-quality coloured rough diamonds are rare, and Alrosa pointed out that as “known deposits mature” and get depleted, such specimens become more and more rare. 

“That is why vivid fancy diamonds of important tones may be valued 10 times higher than colourless ones,” said the spokesman.