The De Beers Group of Companies’ Diamond Insight Report 2015 released recently has confirmed Russia’s move to the top of the table of global diamond producers. Global diamond output grew 4 percent in value last year to $14.5 billion as the average price per carat jumped 8 percent to $116.17 and Russia displaced Botswana as the world’s largest producer, according to data published by the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS).
Data released recently by Kimberly Process shows that the Russian Federation mined 38.3 million carats of diamonds worth $3.73 billion in 2014 compared with Botswana which mined 24.7 million carats worth $3.65 billion.
The latest development were also confirmed to Sunday Standard by De Beers’ Executive Head of Strategy, Bruce Cleaver through a teleconference on Thursday.
Cleaver further noted that, Botswana, together with Russia continue to account approximately half of the world diamond supply in both volume and value terms.
Botswana, through Debswana, which is jointly owned by De Beers and the government, reached peak production in 2006 at 34 million carats followed by 33 million carats in 2007 and 32 million carats in 2008 before cutting output rapidly to 17.7 million carats in 2009 due to the global economic down turn.
However the data further shows that while Russia’s largest quantity of goods ultimately added up to a higher value, Botswana still mined more valuable stones on average. The figures show that the value per carat of Russia’s diamonds was $97.47 while Botswana’s came in at $147.87.
The De Beers report also shows that while rough diamond production value increased in 2014, production volume actually decreased three per cent to 142 million carats. According to the Report, rough diamond demand is likely to be lower in 2015 as higher levels of stock in the midstream and downstream work through the system.
At the same time, the De Beers sponsored report note that consumer demand in 2014 grew in each of the top five diamond consuming markets ÔÇô the US, China, Japan, India and the Gulf ÔÇô which account for 75 per cent of global demand. The strength of the US dollar suppressed further global growth, which at constant exchange rates amounted to almost five per cent. Despite the strong performance in 2014, the Report notes that the continued strength of the US dollar and lower demand growth in China is likely to mean that global growth (in US dollar terms) in 2015 will remain stable on 2014 levels.