Lucapa Diamond Company has suspended mining operations at the Mothae mine in Lesotho, Africa following the enactment of a 21-day nationwide lockdown.
The company expected the lockdown to impact the ongoing operations of the kimberlite diamond mine, particularly on the flow of essential mining supplies and services across the border from South Africa.
Lucapa is confident that mining and processing operations can be restarted relatively quickly should it decide to reopen the mine in the near-term.
The company has also continued its discussions with Africa’s national finance institution, Industrial Development Corporation of South Africa regarding its debt facility, which could see a restructure.
The lockdown imposed by the South African Government is expected to trigger default clauses in Lucapa’s loan agreements.
“The negotiations are at an advanced stage and the company will update the market once concluded,” Lucapa stated in an ASX announcement.
“Lucapa is also in discussions with companies associated with its two biggest shareholders, New Azilian and Equigold regarding their corporate loan facilities. Lucapa will update the market once these discussions conclude.”
The Mothae mine has a minimum of a 20 year mine life based on its 1.1 million tonnes a year throughput rate and existing JORC resource.
Lucapa owns 70 per cent of the Mothae mine in partnership with the Government of the Kingdom of Lesotho (30 per cent).