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Mining in Canada is facing challenges
Mining in Canada is facing challenges

Future of Canadian mining in doubt

Canada may be the world’s third-largest rough diamond producing country by volume, according to recent figures from the Kimberley Process, but the future of its mining industry has been called into question amid rising costs and low-value yields.

A new report from Bloomberg found that every mine in Canada produces stones that fall well below the global average price per carat.

In addition, Canadian stones have tended to be smaller and lower quality than expected. This sector in particular is facing increasing competition from synthetic diamonds, which are cheaper to produce and sell.

Diamond mining is still a young industry in the country, with the discovery of kimberlite in its Northwest Territories occurring in 1991. But while there were once high hopes for the region, two of its main mines, Ekati and Diavik, are now at the mature end of their life cycle and nearing closure. Several other major mines have lost significant market value in recent years and have changed ownership several times.

Establishing new mines has been hampered by the high cost of labour and the remoteness of the sites; northern Canada is frozen most of the year with temperatures as low as -50oC and little existing infrastructure.

However, recent technology breakthroughs including drones, autonomous vehicles and sensors could be the key to overcoming some of the challenges.

A revival of the CanadaMark brand, emphasising the ethical practices and positive associations consumers have with Canada itself, is also taking place.

Top 10 Rough Producers in 2017
CountryValue ($M)  Volume (’000 carats)Average price ($/ct.)
Russia$4,11242,615$97
Botswana$3,32922,961$145
South Africa$3,0899,683$319
Canada$2,06023,234$89
Angola$1,1059,439$117
Namibia$1,0111,948$519
Lesotho$3431,126$304
Australia$20017,135$12
Zimbabwe$1752,508$70
DR Congo$15718,903$8
Top Five Rough Importers in 2017
CountryValue ($M)  Volume (’000 carats)Average price ($/ct.)
India$18,977195,004$97
European Union$12,183159,800$76
United Arab Emirates$6,92586,904$80
Israel$3,65810,065$363
Botswana$1,98310,706$185
Top Five Rough Exporters in 2017
CountryValue ($M)  Volume (’000 carats)Average price ($/ct.)
European Union$12,677129,158$98
United Arab Emirates$9,75788,379$110
Botswana$5,54833,319$167
Russia$4,42945,950$96
Israel$3,0118,731$345

 

Source: Kimberley Process











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Wednesday, 19 June, 2019 08:39am
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