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Rio Tinto Diamond Output Drops In 2018

The Diavik diamond mine in Canada

Rio Tinto’s Argyle mine produced 14.07 million carats in 2018, an 18 percent decline over its 2017 production, while its Diavik mine’s output of 4.36 million carats during the same period was 3 percent lower than the previous year.

Rio Tinto said that Argyle’s output drop was mitigated by enhanced processing of higher grade alluvial tailings, while the Diavik output drop was due to lower grade ore, partially offset by higher ore processing.

The company said the A21 project successfully mined its first ore in March 2018 and reached commercial production during the fourth quarter. Diamond production guidance for 2019 is between 15- and 17 million carats.

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