De Beers cuts production by over a fifth as demand for diamonds dwindles

Losing its sparkle: De Beers will now aim to produce 26m to 29m carats this year

Anglo American has slashed its target for diamond production by more than a fifth as demand for its sparkles sinks.

The FTSE 100 mining giant said its De Beers unit – famous for coining the phrase ‘A Diamond is Forever’ in the 1960s – will aim to produce 26million to 29million carats this year.

This is down from a previous target of as much as 32million carats. It comes after a dismal 2023 for the group, which saw the price of diamonds tumble and excess stock pile up. 

De Beers posted losses of £203million loss last year from a profit of £805million a year earlier.

And last month Anglo American wrote down the value of the De Beers arm by £1.3billion.

Demand for gems has dwindled since the pandemic as consumers put their cash towards travel and spending slows across the US and China, the two biggest diamond markets in the world.

Anglo American shares slipped 2.3 per cent yesterday.