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Alrosa ramps up production despite sales slump

Russian diamond major Alrosa continued to boost production in the third quarter despite an ongoing slide in sales.

Staff reporter
Alrosa endured a difficult Q3

Alrosa endured a difficult Q3

Diamond production in Q3 grew by 24% quarter on quarter and 15% year on year to 12.1m carats, the company said Thursday. Alrosa attributed the quarter on quarter rise to "seasonally increased production at alluvial deposits". The year on year growth was down to start up at the V.Munskoye deposit in Q4 2018 and increased production at the Botuobinskaya pipe, it said.

Sales excluding polished diamonds fell by 23% quarter on quarter to 6.4m carats.

"The decline was caused by softer demand in the diamond jewellery markets after the record-high sales in 2018, particularly a somewhat weaker demand from end consumers in China and USA amid the ongoing trade tensions," said Alrosa.

The strong production growth, combined with weak sales, meant Alrosa's diamond inventories rose by 36% quarter on quarter to 21.7 m carats.

Despite having endured a difficult year to date, Alrosa said it saw an upward trend in rough diamond sales in the second half of Q3 after a turning point in destocking, "thus creating a basis for the market recovery in the future".

Moscow-listed Alrosa (MCX: ALRS) shares were trading at 74 roubles on Thursday. The company's share price has gradually tilted downwards over the course of the year to date, from RUB104 at the start of the year in January. The company's market capitalisation is RUB545.2 billion. 

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