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Irish prospector Karelian diamonds eyeing Finland mine

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Karelian — a sister company of Conroy Gold and Natural Resources — is solely-focused on the Finnish market, but its licences are mainly concentrated on the Russian border region.

Irish prospector Karelian Diamonds is eyeing the prospect of developing its first commercial diamond mine in Finland after acquiring a mining permit from local player A&G Mining for €150,000.

Karelian — a sister company of Conroy Gold and Natural Resources — is solely-focused on the Finnish market, but its licences are mainly concentrated on the Russian border region.

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The deal with A&G gives it rights to the Lahtojoki diamond project in the centre of the country.

The Irish firm will make an initial payment of €50,000 with the remaining €100,000 reliant on whether or not Karelian decides to progress the mine plan within the next two years.

A&G will also receive a royalty payment should said mine become commercial.

The financing of a new mine is likely to cost between €20m and €25m.

Karelian chairman Professor Richard Conroy said that early estimates suggest “quite a few relatively small, but jewellery quality diamonds” at the site, where a profitable small mine could be built relatively quickly thanks to the surrounding infrastructure.

He added that the company would likely take a final decision on the mine within the next six months.

“The acquisition of the Lahtojoki diamond pipe mining permit complements our existing licences and is a major step forward for our diamond programme in Finland,” he added.

Earlier this month, Karelian raised nearly €320,000 in a share placing in order to fund projects, including Lahtojoki, and general working capital needs.

Karelian’s share price was down marginally yesterday.

source: irishexaminer.com

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