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ARGYLE DIAMONDS. Past, Present and Future. Colin Williams General Manager Operations December 2003. Content. 1983 - 1993 1993 - 2003 2003. Overview First Decade Second Decade Future. Overview – Rio Tinto Diamonds Group. Rio Tinto - 100% Argyle, Australia - 60% Diavik, Canada.

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Argyle diamonds

ARGYLE DIAMONDS

Past, Present and Future

Colin Williams

General Manager Operations

December 2003


Overview first decade second decade future

Content

1983 - 1993

1993 - 2003

2003

Overview

First Decade

Second Decade

Future


Rio tinto diamonds provides a sales and marketing service to rio tinto group mines

Overview – Rio Tinto Diamonds Group

  • Rio Tinto - 100% Argyle, Australia

  • - 60% Diavik, Canada

Rio Tinto Diamonds – Provides a sales and marketing service to Rio Tinto Group mines

  • Rio Tinto produces ~ 25% by volume of world’s diamonds


Overview argyle
Overview - Argyle

  • AK1 diamond pipe discovered 1979

  • Alluvial mining 1983 – 1985; 1989 – 2002

  • Open pit mining 1985 – present

  • Produces ~ 30 Mcts pa of rough diamonds

  • 100% product sold direct to the market

  • Retain pinks to manufacture and sell as polished


Overview product profile
Overview – Product Profile

Since 1985 more than:

  • 600 Mt of ore and waste mined

  • 140 Mt of ore processed

  • 600 Mct of diamonds produced


The first decade 1983 1993
The First Decade: 1983 - 1993

  • Alluvials 1983 to 1985 – then recommenced 1989

  • AK1 mining & processing commenced in 1985

  • Successive increases in AK1 ore processed from 3.3Mtpa design up to 7Mtpa

  • Waste/ore strip ratio 4 to 5

  • Recovered Grade – gradual reduction from ~ 9 cts/t to 6cts/t

  • Annual diamond production increased from 6 Mcts to 41 Mcts over 10 years


The second decade 1993 2003
The Second Decade: 1993 - 2003

  • Ore processed increased from 7Mtpa to 10Mtpa

  • Production ~ 40Mcts pa 1993 to 1998

  • Production ~ 30Mcts pa 1999 to 2003

  • 1998 - major organisational change and cost reduction exercise

  • Approval in 1999 for mine expansion - cut back of west wall

  • Tonnes mined annually increased from 32Mt to 88Mt

  • Life of AK1 pit increased to 2007

  • 2002 Alluvial operations ceased


Argyle s future
Argyle’s Future

  • Open Pit – existing LOM 2007

  • Northern Bowl Open Pit expansion

    • Feasibility Study

  • Underground Operation

    • Feasibility Study

    • Exploratory Decline

  • East Kimberley Focus


Underground feasibility study
Underground - Feasibility Study

  • Full feasibility Study

  • Exploratory Decline

  • A$70M Expenditure

  • Completed 2005

  • At this time the decision will be made to either go underground or into closure mode


Underground operation key features
Underground Operation – Key Features

  • Combination of Block Caving, Sub-Level Caving and Open Stoping

  • Ore extraction 2007

  • 5Mtpa ore at full production

  • Diamond production ~ 50% of current level

  • Workforce of ~ 400


Open Pit Operations

Process Plant

Waste Dumps

Emergency Egress

Exploratory Decline

Exploratory Decline Section

  • 2.5km decline into orebody

  • Additional 0.6km of cuddies

  • 1 in 6 gradient

  • Decline hydroscaled & shotcreted


Exploratory decline
Exploratory Decline

  • Will confirm underground design criteria and operating costs

  • Will reduce risks of delay if underground goes ahead

  • Surface works - June to Dec 2003

  • Main decline construction - Dec 2003 to mid 2005


East kimberley focus
East Kimberley Focus

  • Transitioning to local workforce

    • 15 % to 37% in past 3 years

  • Increasing Aboriginal employment

    • 4% to 17% in past 3 years

  • If underground proceeds

    • 80% local workforce

    • 40% Aboriginal

  • Regional Development & Capacity Building

    • Working with local, state and Federal Govts to enable improvements in health, education, infrastructure

    • Training – $5M Federal Govt grant

    • Local and Aboriginal business opportunities



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