By Michelle Graff
Moscow--Russian diamond mining company Alrosa saw rough sales slide in the first half of the year due to continued sluggish demand for diamonds worldwide.

In the first half of 2015, Alrosa sold 18 million carats of diamonds for $2.1 billion, compared with 21.1 billion carats totaling $2.7 billion in the first half of 2014. That represents a 15 percent drop in the quantity of carats sold and a 22 percent decline in revenue.

Half of Alrosa’s first-half sales took place in the second quarter, with the mining company moving 9 million carat of diamonds, including 5.6 million carats of gem-quality goods with an average price of $176 per carat. The remaining 3.4 million carats were industrial diamonds, sold for an average of $11 per carat.

In the second quarter, Alrosa said its rough diamond prices declined by 3 percent and are down 6 percent on the year due to a “slowdown” in the diamond market.

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First-half diamond production totaled 18 million carats of diamonds, a 13 percent year-over-year increase. This was due to progress on a number of different projects designed to increase diamond output, Alrosa said.

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