De Beers Can No Longer Buy From Russia

In a surprising blow for De Beers and an unprecedented boost for the open market, the European Commission has ruled that 40 years of dealings between De Beers and Russian diamond mines will soon cease. The European Commission has ruled that De Beers should not be allowed to buy Russian rough after 2009. Russia is the second-largest diamond producer in the world, accounting for an estimated 25 percent of the world’s production by value. For years, Russia sold nearly all its production through De Beers’ Central Selling Organisation. Originally, De Beers and Russian diamond producer Alrosa submitted a contract where De Beers would buy $275 million a year from Alrosa after 2009. But the Commission decided to phase out those purchases entirely. “For the first time in the history of the diamond market there is an opportunity for genuine competition,” said EC competition commissio
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