The announcement comes after a year, when the company said that it is likely to divest its diamond business along with its processing and marketing units.

The company claimed that the diamond business does not fit its growth strategy amidst unfavorable foreign exchange rates, falling prices and increasing costs.

Rio Tinto diamonds and minerals CEO Alan Davies was quoted by Bloomberg as saying that the company’s board is drawing conclusions to whether sell the business as whole or take up individual sales so as to gross higher value.

"The assets are clearly attractive in their own right.

"It’s a complex business, 12 sites around the world, but it’s a standalone diamond business that’s fully integrated from mine to the
market," noted Davies.

The companies diamond mines are located in Canada, Australia and Zimbabwe.

Moreover, Davies added that the company is keen on continuing operations at its potential Simandou iron ore mine in Africa.

Rio, meanwhile, has commenced the operations at its $2.2bn underground expansion of the Argyle diamond mine located in Western Australia.