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Gem Diamonds Q1 revenue, output slump as Covid-19 wreak havoc

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Gem Diamonds’ first quarter revenue for the year 2020 eased 8% to $47.3 million compared with $51.3 million realised in the fourth quarter of 2019.
The diamond junior said that average price achieved for the period was down 6% to $1 615 per carat from the previous quarter’s $1 713 per carat.
It said prices for Letšeng's diamonds were negatively impacted in March due to the global Covid-19 pandemic.
The company sold 29 298 carats during the first quarter compared to 29 945 carats in the fourth quarter of 2019. 

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Image credit: Gem Diamonds


At least 11 diamonds were sold for more than $1 million each during the period, generating revenue of $20.7 million. 
“Letšeng's mining progressed well during the period and we are confident that the mine will be able to rapidly ramp-up to full production once the lock-down period is lifted and it is safe for all our employees and contractors to return to site,” said Gem chief executive Clifford Elphick.
Meanwhile, production at Letšeng dropped 12% to 26 110 carats in the first quarter from the previous quarter’s 29 768 carats.
Mining and treatment volumes were impacted during the period primarily by drill rig availability issues, testing of different blasting parameters, additional maintenance to the tertiary cone crusher and scrubber drive-arrangement in plant 2.
Mining and treatment volumes were also impacted as a result of the lockdown and the placing of the mine temporarily on care and maintenance which commenced on 28 March 2020.

Mathew Nyaungwa, Editor in Chief of the African Bureau, Rough&Polished