21 Dec 2017 11:23

Alrosa does not expect to again set diamond production records before 2022

YAKUTSK. Dec 21 (Interfax) - Alrosa is forecasting a decline in diamond production to 36.5 million-37 million carats in 2018 and a return to setting production records by 2022 at the earliest, the Russian diamond miner's president, Sergei Ivanov told reporters.

"In diamond mining we will fall in terms of production of carats next year. We expect to get to the level of 36.5 million-37 million carats for next year, even some modest growth by 1 million carats in the course of 2019-2021. It will take us at least until 2022 to reach a record for our percentages, which was shown in 2017," Ivanov said. The 2017 production forecast as of November was 39.1 million carats.

As expected, rough diamond sales in 2018-2019 will be higher than production, he said.

"The company has substantial inventory that we will sell in the next few years. Thus, we will smooth out the negative impact that we had due to the accident at the Mir mine," Ivanov said.

It was reported earlier that Alrosa mined 37.4 million carats in 2016 and plans to mine 39.2 million carats in 2017. Ivanov said that production in 2018 will decline due to the loss of the Mir mine, but by less than 10%.

The company's diamond sales totalled 40.1 million carats in 2016 and are expected to top 40 million carats in 2017.