The Earth is a vast and large planet but thanks to the diamond market, it became a little bit smaller. This is because these precious stones are only gathered in a few main locations around the world, with most of the supplies gradually decreasing as time goes on.
South Africa has been the most famous player in the diamond market for a long time but it has slowly declined in the list of top diamond producers. Shockingly, Russia is now the top diamond producer of rough diamonds, which is interesting because the diamonds in the country were found by chance.
Northern Band Producers
Countries producing diamonds can be separated into two major classifications: The northern and southern bands. The two countries leading in producing diamonds in the northern band are Russia and Canada. Russia began its quest for diamonds in 1947 and was originally planned for industrial purposes and not financial gain.
Stalin needed rough diamonds for financial freedom so he ordered DeBeers Company, the main diamond producer during that time, to find diamonds in the country so that he can end Russia’s foreign dependency. Despite the country’s vast landmass, it is remarkable that it can handle more than thirteen operational open-pit mining sites which made them the world’s leading producer of rough diamonds.
Today, the main mining company in Russia is ALROSA, which monopolized most of the countries mining sites. Meanwhile, Canada has already been on top of the world’s diamond producers and is still climbing the ladder higher over previous years. Now, it is a race to the top against Botswana and Russia.
Canada boasts not only as a top producer but also one of the world’s makers of extremely high quality diamonds. Currently, there are five huge diamond mining sites in the country equipped with state-of-the-art infrastructure. Two of the five mining sites are the newest sites in the world.
Southern Band Producers
The top diamond producers found in the southern band include Namibia, South Africa, Australia, Angola, and Botswana, which is currently the world’s second top diamond producer. Since achieving independence from the United Kingdom in 1966, Botswana’s luck persisted with the uncovering of the country’s first kimberlite pipe and the world’s second largest diamond a few months later.
After a few years, additional diamond mines were established. This put the country on top of the diamond mining producers. Botswana is home of the world’s most abundant diamond mining sites: Jwaneng and Orapa.
Angola’s first diamond mining sites were uncovered in 1913, several decades before they attained independence from Spain in 1975. However, the country still achieved a spot as a top diamond producer due to the help and support of diamond mining giants like Russia’s ALROSA and Australia’s Lucapa.
South Africa has been one of the strongest players in the diamond market since 1866. Although the country has ten active diamond mining sites, it currently is not what it used to be in terms of diamond production.
Another player from the southern band is Namibia which produces high value carats despite a lower count in diamond production. Namibia’s diamonds are mined in the ocean.
The diamond market is truly dynamic, from its prices that are affected by the shifting supply and demand, to its remarkable discoveries of new mining sites. These stones, taking millions of years to form from the pressure and heat within the Earth, are only now coming close enough to the surface to be mined. While some areas might be producing less, new sources will be discovered to keep the diamonds coming.