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JOHANNESBURG - Petra Diamonds Ltd said on Monday it expects full-year core earnings to come in about 10 percent to 15 percent below consensus, and cut its 2018 production forecast.

Petra said it expects earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) to be lower, mainly due to the recent strengthening of the South African rand and its potential impact on Petra’s cost base in US dollar terms.

The company said it expects to produce 4.6-4.7 million carats (mcts), below its previous forecast of 4.8-5 mcts, primarily due to lower grade diamonds recovered from its Cullinan mine in South Africa.

Petra, which said in October it expected to breach an EBITDA related covenant measurement ratios, said it started formal discussions with its lender group.