Canadian diamond mining company Mountain Province expects to resume its traditional sales methods in September, after being unable to execute any formal sales during the Covid-hit second quarter.
With the market for rough diamonds coming to a virtual halt as a result of the pandemic, the 50% owner of Gahcho Kué had to seek out alternative sales channels. Investor Dunebridge Worldwide agreed to buy $50-million worth of diamonds from the company, providing a vital liquidity lifeline.
While Mountain Province remained cautious with respect to the impact of Covid-19 in the short term, CEO Stuart Brown said on Wednesday that the market was starting to recover.
“We believe the market will start improving later in the third quarter of this year and strengthen with the start of the major retail season towards the end of the year and into 2021,” he commented.
Mountain Province sold 757 360 ct at an average value of C$44.92/ct ($33.01/ct) for total proceeds of C$34-million, C$30.6-million of which were under the agreement with Dunebridge.
Meanwhile, the company lowered its 2020 production guidance by about 7% for tonnes mined and 9% for carats recovered, to allow for the new procedures to reduce the risk of Covid-19 infections.
Gahcho Kué, at Kennady Lake on the Canadian tundra, is a joint venture with global major De Beers.