ALROSA, Russia's diamond monopoly, sold more than $25.5 million in special-sized rough diamonds at the 12th international diamond auction hosted by the Russian Diamond Chamber in Moscow.
The auction sold 120 of the offered 133 parcels containing 921 diamonds weighing a total of 15,000 carats. Each parcel put up for auction contained nine diamonds weighing more than 50 carats each. The biggest diamond offered at the auction weighed 301.55 carats. The auction was attended by 38 Russian and foreign companies including representatives from India, Israel, Belgium, Belarus, China and the United States.
ALROSA produces nearly 100% of the country's diamonds and more than 20% of the world's rough diamonds. The organization, which is jointly owned by the central government in Moscow and the Republic of Sakha, operates mines throughout Russia and also in Angola. About 50% of the company's rough diamonds are sold in foreign markets. ALROSA has a distribution agreement with The Diamond Trading Company (DTC), De Beers' marketing arm, but is reducing the amount of diamonds it supplies to De Beers and will cease selling to De Beers after 2008. ALROSA also markets its own stones and supports a growing Russian diamond-cutting industry.