Miners have unearthed a massive jade stone believed to be worth more than $170 million, in Burma, a southeast Asian country also known as Myanmar.
Report from BBC last weekend said the stone was discovered in a remote mine in Kachin State, the northern region of the country. It measures 5.8 meters (19 feet) long and weighs a total of 175 tonnes (192 US tons).
A local politician, U Tint Soe told International news media that it a good sign for the state of the country’s economy.
“I assume that it is a present for the fate of our citizens, the government, and our party as it was discovered in the time of our government. It’s a very good sign for us.”
One of the miners, 44-year-old Sao Min expressed his joy as he dedicated the finding to his country, Burma. Mr. Min told Daily Mail:
“We thought we had won the lottery. But this belongs to the country. It is in honour of our leaders.”
The Jade stone is an ornamental rock, and its beauty made it valuable for ornaments and decorative objects. It is referred to two different metamorphic rocks that are composed of different silicate minerals. Jadeite shows colour variations, including blue, lavender-mauve, pink, and emerald-green colours, but the translucent emerald-green jadeite is the most prized variety, both historically and today.
The boulder will be sent off to China, where it is expected to be carved into jewellery and sculptures. In China, the stone is believed to bring luck and good health.
Burma, also known as Myanmar, is the source of nearly all the world’s finest jadeite – which is responsible for almost half of the country’s GDP. And just like other corruption driven countries, the multi-billion dollar trade is often shrouded in government corruption, crime and environmental and human destruction.