Aug 02, 2017

Rio Tinto H1 Diamond Revenue Flat, Profit Dips 13%

Releasing its interim financial results for the six months ended June 30, 2017 (H1 2017), Rio Tinto said that revenue from its diamond operations was flat at US$ 340 million (H1 2016: US$ 342 million) while net earnings dipped by 13% to US$ 19 million (H1 2016: US$ 22 million). The Group said that the EBITDA for the diamond segment was also down by 19% to US$ 97 million (H1 2016: US$ 121 million).

Commenting on the performance, the Company said that rough diamond demand was solid in 2017 first half as factories in India increased manufacturing capacity based on an improved outlook in key emerging markets, resulting in re-stocking activity throughout the pipeline.

As reported earlier, diamond production at 8.49 mn cts (H1 2016: 8.96 mn cts) was five per cent lower than 2016 first half due to lower ore volumes processed at Argyle following wet weather and additional maintenance. This was partly offset by higher carats recovered at Diavik due to higher processed volumes and an increase in recovered grades.

Rio said that development of the A21 pipe at Diavik remains on schedule and within budget. Production guidance for 2017 remains at 19 to 24 mn cts of diamonds.