The move comes after the company has dropped 2014 production forecast for the project by 6.25% due to problems associated with crushing operations at the mine.

Rio Tinto spokeswoman was quoted by The West Australian as saying: "Like others in the mining industry, the Argyle Diamond Mine is focused on reducing costs and streamlining its operations.

"Argyle has decided to reduce some support roles in the business as part of its ongoing work to ensure it has a competitive strategy and a sustainable cost base."

The company expects its share of production from Argyle and Canada’s Diavik mine of 15 million carats this year, due to maintenance shutdown at Argyle for modifications to both underground crushers.

Second crusher at Argyle was commissioned in July; however, the technical issue is believed to have an impact on both the crushers.

Rio earlier said that expansion at the Argyle is expected to reach full capacity in 2015.