NORTHWEST TERRITORIES — De Beers Canada of Toronto has announced further production cuts at its Snap Lake diamond mine near Lac de Gras. The operation is being restructured so that output will match reduced demand for rough stones. Downsizing will reduce the De Beers workforce by 128 people and eliminate 90 contract employees.
Times are indeed tough in the luxury goods market. Ontario’s first diamond producer, the Victor mine, was shut down for a week at Christmas, and another six-week shutdown is planned for this summer. Closures announced by Debswana, a joint venture of De Beers and the government of Botswana, include two mines until the end of the year, and a third mine until at least mid-April.
Global demand for rough diamonds is predicted to drop 60% from last year.
The De Beers website is at www.DeBeersGroup.com.