RAPAPORT... Global diamond production rose 26 percent to $14.41 billion in 2011 as rough diamond prices soared during the year, Kimberley Process data showed. By volume, production fell 3 percent to 123.99 million carats. The average price of production rose 31 percent to $116.19 per carat.
Botswana ranked as the top producer by value in 2011 having mined 22.904 million carats valued at $3.9 billion. The average price of Botswana’s production increased 45 percent to $170.36 per carat. Russia was the top producer by volume with output of 35.139 million carats valued at $2.67 billion, as the average price of its production rose 11 percent to $76.12 per carat.
Canada ranked third with production of 10.795 million carats valued at $2.55 billion as prices there rose 21 percent to $236.30 per carat. South Africa came in fourth after mining 8.205 million carats valued at $1.73 billion, or $210.88 per carat, followed by Angola where production of 8.328 million carats was valued at $1.16 billion, or $139.60 per carat.
Other top diamond producers by volume included the Democratic Republic of the Congo with 19.249 million carats valued at $9.33 per carat; Zimbabwe with 8.5 million carats valued at $56.01 per carat; and Australia with 7.829 million carats at $28.19 per carat.
The total rough exports by all Kimberley Process member states jumped 41 percent to $52.83 billion, while rough imports rose 35 percent to $50.89 billion.
The European Union was the world’s top rough exporter in 2011 with $18.54 billion leaving the region. The United Arab Emirates (UAE) came in second as its exports jumped 66 percent to $5.87 billion. Botswana was third place with exports of $5.47 billion, followed by Israel with exports of $4.42 billion, and Russia with exports worth $3.81 billion.
Europe was also the top rough importer in 2011 bringing in $18.51 billion worth of goods, followed by India at $14.28 billion, Israel at $5.32 billion, UAE with $3.96 billion and China with $3.16 billion.
Lesotho again ranked as the highest value producer despite that the average price of stones there fell 12 percent to $1,602.05 per carat.