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Rio Tinto Grants Rough Buyers Flexibility

Miner allows customers to purchase only what they need during pandemic.
Jul 28, 2020 7:20 AM   By Leah Meirovich
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RAPAPORT... Rio Tinto has given customers flexibility with their rough purchases since the Covid-19 crisis began, allowing them to buy only what they needed.

“We provided full flexibility for all our customers and worked constructively with individual Rio Tinto select diamantaires during the pandemic to understand, and operate in line with, their needs,” a company spokesperson told Rapaport News Monday.

Select diamantaires are Rio Tinto’s long-term clients, who commit to purchasing certain quantities of rough. In exchange, they receive consistent supply throughout the year.

While demand for its rough has been impacted since the coronavirus emerged, the company has seen consistent improvement since April, it said. Meanwhile, sales of polished pink diamonds from Rio Tinto’s Argyle mine in Australia have remained strong despite the virus outbreak, it added.

Sales have suffered from weak demand and restrictions on shipping and travel to Antwerp, where the company holds its tender of special diamonds. However, the miner has enabled buyers to view stones digitally before purchasing, using high-resolution photos, 360-degree videos, and live showings of the product through videoconferencing platforms.

At its June tender of special stones in Antwerp, Rio Tinto saw solid participation and sales results, it noted. The sale included a 70.36-carat white diamond from the company’s Diavik mine in Canada, as well as two large, white rough diamonds from its Argyle deposit. The stones, which are called The Brilliant Lights of Argyle, weighed 42.62 carats and 41.70 carats.

Image: Rough diamonds. (Rio Tinto)
Tags: Argyle, COVID-19, Diavik mine, Flexibility, Leah Meirovich, Rapaport News, Rio Tinto, Select Diamantaire, The Brilliant Lights of Argyle
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