LONDON Dec 13 Anglo American said on
Tuesday demand at its latest De Beers diamond sale showed a
slowdown in response to India's withdrawal of high-value
banknotes, but was still higher than a year ago when commodity
trade was slumping.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi's decision to scrap 500 rupee
and 1,000 rupee banknotes as part of a crackdown on tax dodgers
and counterfeiters has dented consumer spending in a country
where most people are paid in cash, and buy what they need with
Anglo American said rough diamond sales for De Beers' final
sale of the year amounted to $418 million, compared with the
$476 million value of the previous sales cycle this year.
"While the trade in lower value rough diamonds is
experiencing a temporary slowdown as a result of the
demonetisation programme in India, demand across the rest of the
product mix continued to be healthy," Bruce Cleaver, CEO of De
"Pleasingly, sales were also significantly higher than those
for the equivalent cycle in 2015."
(Reporting by Barbara Lewis and Vidya L Nathan; Editing by Mark