De Beers, a unit of Anglo American plc, said demand for rough diamonds has improved in the third quarter of the year in the months leading up to the holiday selling season.
Mark Cutifani, chief executive of Anglo American, said despite the “encouraging improvement” in demand for rough diamonds, “there is still some uncertainty in terms of the timing of a sustained recovery.”
Rough diamond output was down 4 per cent to 7.2 million carats, driven by planned reductions in production to reflect weaker demand due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
But demand for rough started to pick up in the quarter as Covid-19 restrictions gradually eased in cutting and polishing centres and consumer markets ahead of the holiday season. Rough diamond sales reached 6.6 million carats from three sights in Q3 compared with 0.3 million carats from two sights in Q2 and 7.4 million carats from three sights in Q3 2019.
Production guidance is unchanged at 25 to 27 million carats, subject to continuous review based on the disruptions related to Covid-19 as well as the timing and scale of the recovery in demand, the company said.