Sales of Botswana's state-owned Okavango Diamond Company (ODC) jumped by 80% to $547 million in 2016. According to Marcus ter Haar, the deputy managing director, this jump is as a result of global consumer demand having rebounded.
The deputy MD told Reuters that overall volumes also rose by 115% to 3.44 million carats after accounting for various post sale adjustments throughout the year. Although sales in 2016 were significantly higher, the average price per carat weakened to $158.78 from $183.78 in 2015. "The fall in average price per carat is attributable to the different mix of diamonds sold over the two periods," said ter Haar.
ODC is a rough diamond distribution company that is wholly owned by the government of Botswana. The company was established in 2012 to market a portion of Debswana’s rough diamond production. Under the contractual agreements governing the sale of Debswana’s diamonds, ODC is entitled to purchase and sell 15% of Debswana’s total production. ODC’s sales are expected to be in excess of $400 million each year, making it a scale supplier of rough diamonds to the industry and the largest source of uniquely Botswana diamonds in the market. Debswana is Botswana’s largest diamond producer and is a joint venture between Botswana and De Beers.