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Diamond exports to fall below $20 billion in 2019-20

Date: 14-08-2019
Subject: Diamond exports to fall below $20 billion in 2019-20
SURAT: The ongoing recession in the world’s largest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat has taken the sheen out of the glittering diamonds. For the first time in last one decade, exports of polished diamonds are likely to remain below $20 billion due to their continuous fall since April 2019. 

Industry experts believe that polished diamond exports will continue to fall and that they are likely to pick up in November ahead of Christmas. 

According to data complied by Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), exports of polished diamonds between April-July declined 18% to $6.7 billion compared to $8 billion during the same period in previous year. 
In July 2019, exports of polished diamond declined 19% to $1.5 billion compared to $2 billion during the same month in previous year. 

Industry experts said the current recession is ‘worse than the one witnessed in 2008-09’ during the global economic downturn. The polished diamond prices have crashed significantly by more than 20%, giving a tough time to diamantaires in Surat and Mumbai. 

Sources said diamantaires in Surat and Mumbai are sitting on a stock inventory of more than Rs15,000 crore, which is waiting to be cleared. Buyers in international market are demanding polished diamonds at discounted rate. 

A majority of diamond units in Surat, including small and medium units, have reduced production capacity by almost 40% to clear their inventories. 

Aniruddha Lidbide, diamond industry analyst, said, “The diamond industry is in a worst crisis of all. The demand for polished diamonds is very weak due to the US-China trade war. The situation is not going to recover in the immediate future and that it will take a long time for the diamantaires to get back on track.” 

Source: timesofindia.indiatimes.com

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