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De Beers is digging up more diamonds than any time since 2008

Company produces 33.5 million carats in 2017.

De Beers mined more diamonds last year than any time since the global financial crisis of 2008.

The company, a unit of Anglo American, mined 33.5 million carats in 2017. That’s a 22% jump from a year earlier, beating its own target. Production was boosted by its new Gahcho Kue mine in Canada and better market conditions. 

Still, it hasn’t necessarily been a bumper year for gems. Diamond sales at De Beers totaled $5.3 billion last year, compared with $5.6 billion in 2016, even though production was higher. That’s because the average selling price fell 13% last year to $162 a carat.

De Beers sold more lower-quality stones in India in 2017, a rebound from the previous year, when demonetisation cut financing for gem cutters and polishers. The Gahcho Kue mine is also churning out lower-value diamonds.

© 2018 Bloomberg

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