Aber Diamond Corporation - Diavik Project Update



    TORONTO, Aug. 7 /CNW/ - ABER DIAMOND CORPORATION (TSE-ABZ, NASDAQ-ABER)
Diavik Diamond Mines Inc., the operator of the Diavik Diamond Mine has
reported that approximately 3.3 million carats of diamonds were recovered from
the mine during the second calendar quarter compared with around 2.7 million
carats for the comparable period last year. Production for the first half of
the calendar year was almost 5.9 million carats. This is well ahead of the
current plan and principally the result of higher recovery of diamonds per
tonne of ore processed. The substantial increase in diamond recovery is a
combination of improvements to the processing circuit to enhance the recovery
of small diamonds as well as, to a lesser extent, recovery of larger stones
that were not anticipated by the 1994/95 large diameter core sampling which
formed the basis of the resource model. Similar improvements in recovered
grade are expected for all of the Diavik reserves and resources but to
differing degrees for the various geological units of the different kimberlite
pipes.
    Operating experience has shown that the volume, and therefore tonnage, of
A-154 South mined to date has been on the order of 10% greater than the
resource block model for this pipe. However, it is unknown whether this factor
will persist at depth in A-154 South, or in the other pipes making up the
Diavik resource. The increases in grade will deliver higher annual carat
production from the project mining and processing capacity while the increase
in tonnage will have a positive impact on the mine life.
    Work on the new mine plan is now nearing completion. It will be reviewed
by the boards of Aber and Rio Tinto towards the end of this year. The new mine
plan brings underground mining of at least three of the four kimberlite pipes
into the production schedule. The final version of the plan will incorporate
diamond price information from underground bulk samples from A-21 and A-154
North. The A-154 North sample was collected in two aliquots. One was mined
using conventional drill-blast techniques while the other was extracted using
a road-header or mechanical mining machine. The results will be examined for
any recovered grade (carats per tonne) or diamond quality (dollars per carat)
differences between the two mining techniques. Since Aber and Rio Tinto do not
disclose diamond pricing information to each other, Aber plans to have the
bulk sample diamonds valued independently for public reporting purposes.

    About Aber

    Aber Diamond Corporation is a specialist diamond company focusing on the
mining and retail segments of the diamond industry. The Company supplies rough
diamonds to the global market through its 40% ownership in the Diavik Diamond
Mine and owns one of the world's premier retailers of diamond jewelry, Harry
Winston.

    %SEDAR: 00003786E




For further information:

For further information: Robert A. Gannicott, Chairman and Chief
Executive Officer, (416) 362-2237; Investor Relations, (416) 362-2237 (ext.
244)

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