March 16, 1999
Argyle Production Predicted To Fall
Production at the Argyle diamond mine in Australia is expected to fall
almost 20% to 33 million carats this year, according to the minority owner.
The decline will be due mostly to temporary construction work involved in
expanding the AK1 open-pit mine, says Douglas Bailey, chief executive of
Ashton Mining Ltd., which owns 38% of Argyle. (The majority owner is RTZ,
also known as Rio Tinto Ltd.).
Ashton Mining Ltd. reported a net profit of $11.6 million in 1998 compared to a
loss of $62.02 million in 1997, mainly because of asset write-downs.
The owners have marketed Argyle diamonds on their own since breaking from
the De Beers network in 1996.
- by Robert Weldon, G.G.