Lucapa Diamond Company, Empresa Nacional de Diamantes and Rosas & Petalas have received approval for a new kimberlite exploration licence for the Lulo Diamond Project.

Angolan Minister of Mines and Geology Francisco Manuel Monteiro de Queiroz formally approved the licence that covers the entire 3,000km² Project Lulo concession.

The new approved kimberlite exploration licence will be valid for five years.

"The new approved kimberlite exploration licence will be valid for five years."

Following approval from the ministry, the Lulo partners can finalise a mineral investment contract together for the new licence, which will include a programme of exploration activities for a five-year period.

The kimberlite exploration programme at Projecto Lulo has been stepped-up in expectation of the new exploration licence, with two rigs drilling the key kimberlite targets and a third drill rig due to arrive in Angola this month.

In addition, a helicopter-borne Time-Domain Electromagnetic survey is about to be flown over the Cacuilo River and valley area to help identify any additional non-magnetic kimberlite targets (such as target 259) and boost the definition of known targets.

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In November 2014, the Lulo partners procured the alluvial mining licence from the ministry.