DIAMOND giant De Beers announced it was not renewing its contract with Argyle Diamond Mines Joint Venture, this week 10 years ago. Since the original contract was signed in 1983, a major part of the production from Argyle’s WA mine had been marketed by De Beers’ Central Selling Organisation. Argyle instead aimed to sell its rough diamonds through its European sales office in Antwerp, Belgium. The loss of the contract was not expected to impact on the retail market for diamond jewellery due to Argyle low quality output, which comprised only a small percentage of De Beers’ sales. De Beers director Tim Capon said the readjustment of 6 per cent of turnover was not earth-shattering and he did not think it would have a significant impact on the diamond world.
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