London: De Beers, the world’s leading diamond company, has released its Q1 2023 report, revealing mixed results in its diamond production and sales. The company reported flat rough diamond production at 8.9 million carats, with the planned treatment of higher grade ore and strong operational performance offsetting the planned end of operations in Venetia’s open pit.
Production in Botswana increased by 12% to 6.9 million carats, while production in Namibia rose by 37% to 0.6 million carats, primarily driven by the contribution from the Benguela Gem vessel. However, production in South Africa decreased by 56% to 0.7 million carats due to the planned completion of the Venetia open pit.
The company’s sales were in line with expectations, with Sightholders taking a cautious approach in planning their 2023 allocation schedule given the current uncertain macroeconomic outlook. Rough diamond sales totalled 9.7 million carats from three Sights, up 23% compared to 7.9 million carats from two Sights in Q1 2022.
De Beers has maintained its production guidance for 2023 at 30-33 million carats (100% basis), subject to trading conditions. The unit cost guidance for 2023 remains unchanged at around $80/carat.
Despite the mixed results, De Beers remains optimistic about the future of the diamond industry. Bruce Cleaver, CEO of De Beers Group, said in a statement, “We remain confident in the medium to long-term outlook for the diamond industry, and we are committed to continuing to invest in our operations, partnerships and initiatives that will support the sustainable growth of our business and the wider industry.