Mustang Resources (ASX: MUS) announced its ruby inventory had swelled to 352,260 carats in time for the company’s first tender between 27 and 30 October 2017.
During September, the company achieved record production of 27,131 carats from its Montepuez ruby project in Mozambique’s north.
As a result of record production and existing stockpiles, the initial 200,000 ruby carats to be sold at the company’s maiden tender has now increased to 352,260 carats.
First sales of the company’s gems will be conducted via a closed bid tender in Port Louis, Mauritius between 27 and 30 October 2017.
More than 42-known ruby buyers from Thailand, India, Sri Lanka, Hong Kong and Europe have registered to participate. Mozambican government representatives will also be attending the sale.
The Montepuez project comprises three licences and one mining concession encompassing 19,300 hectares near the world’s largest known ruby deposit which was discovered in 2012.
Global ruby market
In 2014, the global ruby market had an estimated worth of US$2 billion and the ruby is the next most expensive gemstone after diamonds.
The International Gem Society claims rubies are “exceptionally durable” with colour that reaches “vivid saturation”.
According to the society, large gem-quality rubies are rarer than diamonds of similar size and can be me more valuable.
The world ruby supply is fractured and unreliable with most gemstone production coming from artisanal and small-scale miners in Burma, Tanzania and Madagascar.
During the last decade, demand for the ruby has increased, causing the price to surge more than 60% in the last eight years.
Gemfields, which discovered the world’s biggest ruby deposit, sold a 25.59 carat ruby ring for US$30 million in 2015. During that year, Gemfields averaged US$680 per carat for every ruby sold.
With rising demand for ethically-sourced rubies with consistent quality and price, Mustang said it is poised to take advantage and play a “significant” role in the ruby market’s growth in coming years.
Mustang Resources’ shares were up more than 27% in early afternoon trade.