Rio Tinto discovers rare violet diamond

Rio Tinto discovers rare violet diamond

Rio Tinto (LSE:RIO) revealed a rare 2.83-carat violet diamond, the largest of its kind ever discovered at Australia’s secluded Argyle mine.

The “Argyle Violet” which could sell for more than US$4 million will be the centrepiece of the 2016 Argyle Pink diamonds bid, the annual exhibition of the mine’s rarest diamonds.

The oval shaped rock was found last year in August and originally weighted 9.17 carats. Rio said it took over 80 hours of work to polish it down.

Patrick Coppens, Rio Tinto’s general manager of sales said: “Impossibly rare and limited by nature, the Argyle Violet will be highly sought after for its beauty, size and provenance.”

Coppens added that violet diamonds are very rare and in its 32 years of operation, the Argyle mine has only produced 12 carats of polished violet diamonds.

The mine produces more than 90 per cent of the world’s pink diamonds and has only generated one other significant violet-coloured rock weighing more than 1 carat.

Josephine Archer from Argyle Pink Diamonds said: “That diamond was discovered in 2018, so the Argyle Violet is “a complete fluke of nature.”

The 2016 Argyle Pink diamonds exhibition will start private trade viewings in June and will tour New York, Copenhagen and Hong Kong.