A De Beers-owned company has reportedly found a diamond that could sit as high as third on the list of the largest gem-quality diamonds ever mined.

Debswana Diamond Company unearthed a 1,098-carat stone that, if correctly sized, will sit behind only the famed Cullinan at 3,106.75 carats and the Lesedi la Rona at 1,109.

It was found in Botswana earlier this month at the Jwaneng Mine.

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Raluca Anghel, head of industry relations at The Natural Diamond Council (NDC), said: “It is always thrilling to find an extremely large diamond, one of nature’s most coveted, unique and valuable rarities.

“Debswana, the partnership between the government of Botswana and De Beers Group is a major employer and contributor to the country’s economy, contributing more than 34,000 jobs in Botswana.

“They have worked tirelessly together for over 50 years to ensure ethical and responsible practices and turn this incredibly valuable gemstone into an enduring positive legacy that benefits the people of Botswana.

“Before the discovery of diamonds, there were only three secondary schools in Botswana, now there are more than 300 and every child receives free schooling up to the age of 13, there were just five kilometres of tarmacked road across the country of the size of Spain, now there are nearly 6,000 kilometres, there was one doctor for every 48,000 people now there is one for every 3,000 people.”