London-based diamond company Petra Diamonds Ltd. returned to production activities at its Williamson mine in the east African country of Tanzania, after nearly two years of conducting rehabilitation activities at the site, Mineweb reported.
Petra spokesperson Cathy Malins said that the company expects the Williamson mine to produce approximately 3 million metric tons of ore annually for the foreseeable future. Tanzania's Mines Ministry's acting commissioner Ally Samaje said in April that the ministry expected diamond production at Williamson to increase by over 500%, from less than 30,000 carats to 150,000 carats, in light of Petra's expansion work on the mine.
The Williamson mine is considered to be the largest diamond deposit in the world, measured by surface area: about 146 hectares of ore.
Williamson has also been mined for diamonds continuously for longer than any other site in the world, about 72 years. Petra owns a 75% stake in the mine, while the government of Tanzania owns the remaining 25%.