Ruby - All is well


In our last article we reported the failure of Canadian mining company True North Gems (TNG) in Greenland.
After more than 12 years of unsuccessfully trying to develop and exploit the ruby deposits in Aappaluttoq, TNG was sent into voluntary bankruptcy in September 2016. Mind you, their other activities, outside of Greenland, are not affected.

TNG`s licence was taken over by Norwegian LNS Group, who started mining May 2017 and are currently even investigating the potential to expand to two nearby ruby-bearing sites. However, it might take some more time before rubies and pink sapphires hit the markets. A company spokesman recently announced, that at the moment LNS is "in the process of selecting...sales partners" and is "looking forward to introducing the Greenland rubies and pink sapphires to the market in the upcoming months ".

Well, we heard that kind of optimistic statement from TNG many times. Let´s hope that some day it will turn out to be true...

Grönland Rubin Rohware Greenland ruby roughGHrönland Rubin Greenland ruby
Ruby rough and a facetted ruby from Greenland

Side note: geologists estimate the age of Greenland rubies to a stunning 2660 million years!
By comparison, East African rubies formed about 500 million years ago and most Asian ruby localities register at "a mere" 50 million years. 


The Montepuez ruby field continues to grow and has reached a length of 40km.
This tempted several more mining companies, apart from Gemfields, to come and try their luck. Some of the new players´ names are Mustang Resources, Redstone Resources, Battery Minerals and Fura Gems.

However, whereas Gemfields managed to set a new sales record of USD 54.96 million at their latest auction, held Nov. 6 to 10 in Singapur, Mustang Recources was not nearly as successful.

Matter of fact, their maiden auction, which took in place from Oct. 27 to 30 in Port Louis, on the island of Mauritius, was a veritable flop. Only eight of the 22 lots on offer changed hands and with only 550.00 dollars in gross sales, disappointment was huge. 

Reasons were manifold. One, for sure, was location. Participants, in particular the notoriously superstitious Thais, considered it a bad omen that the booths overlooked a neighbouring graveyard. Another reason was the nature of the lots on offer. Many complained that parcels were too small and too mixed. Other than Gemfields, Mustang Resources graded by size, not by colour and quality. Indeed most lots were a mix of clean and heavily included stones with colours ranging from fine red to almost colourless.

Several buyers just would not accept this and decided to spend their days fishing or at the beach and some went back home early.

Mustang Resources claimed to have learned a lot from this auction. The next auctions will not be held on some godforsaken island in the middle of the Indian Ocean and they even consider grading the parcels before putting them on offer...

Rubin ruby mosambik mozambiqueRubin ruby mosambik mozambique
Two rubies from Montepuez, Mozambique