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Diamond Production Plunges in 2020

Jul 8, 2021 8:54 AM   By Rapaport News
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Global rough-diamond production slumped last year, new data showed, as miners slashed output in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The total value of diamond recoveries slid 32% to $9.24 billion in 2020, according to figures the Kimberley Process (KP) released recently. Production volume dropped 23% to 107.1 million carats, while the average price fell 12% to $86 per carat.

De Beers and Russia’s Alrosa saw rough output by volume decline 18% and 22%, respectively, as both companies attempted to match production to the lower demand. Eight of the 10 largest producing countries by value registered a drop in production, with only South Africa and Zimbabwe witnessing increases.

Production in Botswana, De Beers’ largest source of goods, fell 27% to $2.52 billion. Still, the nation jumped ahead of previous leader Russia, where output plummeted 45% to $2.25 billion, reflecting Alrosa’s cuts.

The data release follows the KP’s annual intersessional meeting, which took place late last month.

Rough-diamond production in 2020

Country 2020 Production Year-on-year change
  Volume (cts.) Value ($) $/ct. Volume Value $/ct.
Botswana 16,940,705.00 $2,521,363,106.00 $148.83 -28% -27% 3%
Russia 31,186,550.59 $2,254,886,568.57 $72.30 -31% -45% -20%
Angola 7,734,281.00 $1,017,283,207.00 $131.53 -15% -20% -5%
South Africa 8,478,398.00 $958,497,881.28 $113.05 18% 10% -7%
Canada 13,103,545.77 $929,282,614.88 $70.92 -30% -45% -22%
Sierra Leone641,469.10$119,434,480.22$186.19-21%-29%-10%
Australia  10,945,135.55$117,876,142.53
Source: Kimberley Process

Correction, July 11, 2021: A previous version of the table mistakenly omitted Namibia and included the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Image: Haul trucks at De Beers’ Orapa mine in Botswana. (Ben Perry/Armoury Films/De Beers)
Tags: Alrosa, Botswana, COVID-19, De Beers, diamond production, Kimberley Process, KP, Production, Rapaport News, rough, Rough Diamonds, Russia, South Africa, Zimbabwe
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