Reading the press reports of this month (July 2018) reveals a trend, especially that of the current strength of the diamond market. We also notice the optimism that the announcement of the acquisition of the exploration company Peregrine Diamonds by De Beers, owner of the source Chidliak, has triggered.
Firstly, Rio Tinto announced that diamond production had risen by 7% in the second quarter of 2018. The main reason for this, according to the mine giant, was an increase in the production of it’s Argyle mine in Australia and a small increase in the Diavik mine in the Northwest Territories, in which Rio Tinto has a 60% stake.
At the same time De Beers announced that the production of rough diamonds had increased by 3% to 9 million carats in the second quarter. A sign of higher production to meet the higher demand, as well as the acceleration of Gahcho Kué, indicates the miner. During the period, production amounted to 8,997 million carats compared to 8,742 million carats in the same period last year. The total number of mined carats in the first half of the year was 17.5 million carats, 8% higher than last year.
“Sales volumes benefited from the positive mood of the diamond market, based on an increase in the demand for jewels with diamonds at the end of 2017 and the continuing positive prospects,” said Anglo American, the parent company of the mining company.
In addition, the average sales price rose by 4% to 162 USD per carat, in the first half of 2018. Demand for higher quality goods was strong, which is another encouraging sign. The company closed its announcement with an indication showing an expected production between 34 and 36 million carats for 2018, against 33.5 million carats last year. De Beers and ALROSA both indicated a solid demand for goods in the first half of the year.
In the meantime, two of the world’s leading centers in the diamond market also reported positive figures for the month of June. That month, exports of polished goods in India rose by 5% year-on-year to $ 2.08 billion. In Antwerp, exports of polished diamonds rose by 4% to $ 1.04 billion.
Good news about the diamond market also came from the retail trade. Chow Tai Fook has achieved solid results with its operations in Hong Kong and Macao, stimulated by optimistic customers and an increase of Hong Kong tourists originating from mainland China.
The giant of jewelery sales said retail sales increased by 21% in Hong Kong and Macao during the second quarter. In the meantime, same store sales – a critical parameter in the retail trade – made an extraordinary jump of 26%.
Finally, the initiative of De Beers in Canada should be praised. It is assumed that Chidliak contains more than 22 million carat in mineral sources. After the failure and the heavy losses incurred in the Snap Lake operation, De Beers is clearly working on diamond mining in Canada.
As Bruce Cleaver, CEO of De Beers, said: “With strong prospects in terms of consumer demand, we are looking for new opportunities to invest in our potentially future offer. We look forward to expanding our portfolio in Canada and working with partners in the Nunavut region to develop this project.“