De Beers’ parent company Anglo American said its rough diamond production increased by three percent to 9.0 million carats reflecting production increases to meet stronger demand as well as the contribution from the ramp-up at Gahcho Kué.
The group’s Botswana (Debswana) production increased by six percent to 6.3 million carats in response to stronger trading conditions. Jwaneng production increased by four percent to 3.0 million carats due to an increase in tonnes mined and treated. Similarly at Orapa2 production increased by eight per cent to 3.3 million carats due to the ramp up of additional processing capacity in response to stronger trading conditions.
Namibia (Namdeb Holdings) production increased by 32% to 0.5 million carats driven by access to consistently higher grades at the land operations and technology-led optimisation of the marine drill fleet.
South Africa (DBCM) production decreased by 28% to 1.0 million carats, primarily owing to a period of suspended production at Venetia following a fatal incident in March. Canada production increased by 17% to 1.2 million carats due to the completion of the ramp-up at Gahcho Kué.
Rough sales volumes were 10.0 million carats (9.4 million carats on a consolidated basis3) from three sales cycles in Q2 2018, compared with 5.9 million carats (5.4 million carats on a consolidated basis3) from two sales cycles in Q2 2017. In addition to the different number of sales cycles over the period, sales volumes benefited from positive sentiment in the midstream following growth in consumer demand for diamond jewellery in late 2017, and a continuing positive outlook.
The H1 2018 average realised rough diamond price increased by four per cent to $162/carat (H1 2017: $156/carat) due to a 1.6 per cent increase in the average rough price index and an improvement in the sales mix, driven by the substantial volumes of lower value goods sold in H1 2017, following the Indian demonetisation programme in late 2016. Excluding this impact, the average value of the production mix was lower in H1 2018 as a higher proportion of lower value carats was delivered from Orapa and Gacho Kué.