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Dominion, Rio Tinto unearth 552-carat diamond at Diavik mine

A 552-carat yellow gem, which is about the size of a chicken egg, was unearthed from the Diavik mine in Canada's Northwest Territories, owned by Dominion Diamond Mines and Rio Tinto.

Dominion Diamond Mines CEO Shane Durgin said the diamond, the largest-ever found in North America, is of gem quality, but refused to give more details regarding its value.

According to Bloomberg News, yellow stones are typically sold at a discount to Type IIa top whites, which are frequently found in African mines, but the highest quality fancy vivid yellow or fancy intense yellow stones can sell for a premium.

"We can label it fancy yellow, but beyond that, due to its rough nature and the abrasions received through the processing facility, that's all we can comment on," Durgin said in an interview with Bloomberg News.

The report also said the yellow gem is the seventh-largest ever found in the 21st century and is set to be among the 30 largest stones unearthed.

Previously, Rio Tinto unearthed a 187.7-carat, gem-quality diamond at Diavik, dubbed as Foxfire, in 2015. The diamond was subsequently cut and turned into a pair of pale yellow earrings, weighing a total of 77.7 carats, which was sold for over US$1.5 million at a Christie's auction earlier this month.