Antwerp’s Rough Diamond Trade Shoots Up in November; Rough Exports Up 22%


The diamond trade in Antwerp took a sharp upward turn in November, with rough exports rising 22.3% in value terms and a massive 141.6% in volume terms year-on-year, according to figures released by the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC). Polished imports and exports too exhibited positive growth in comparison to November 2016, the data indicated.

During November 2017, the Antwerp centre exported over 14.6 million carats of rough at a value of US$ 1,283.6 million, a year-on-year jump of 141.6% in terms of volume, and of 22.3% in value terms. Rough imports too were up 27.1% in volume terms – with 8.10 mn carats of rough being imported, but declined by 13.3% in value terms to US$ 985.7 million as compared to a year earlier.

Trade in polished also gained some momentum. In November 2017, the Antwerp centre exported 392,107 cts of polished at a value of US$ 971 mn, a drop of 13.1% in volume terms, but a rise of 10.56% in value terms year-on-year. During this period, the centre imported 465,671 cts of polished at a value of US$ 880.7 mn, registering a 27.48% rise in volume terms and a 26.72% rise in value terms as compared to November 2016.

During the first eleven months of 2017, rough exports totalled 115.82 mn cts at US$ 11.42 bn, showing an increase of 24.90% in volume terms but a fall of 1.48% in value terms, while rough imports of 88 mn cts at US$ 9.96 bn were up 4% y-o-y in volume terms and down 11.98% in value terms.

Polished exports during the Jan-Nov 2017 period stood at 45.29 mn cts at US$ 10.47 bn, down 10.20% in volume and 4.68% in value, while polished imports of 52.93 mn cts at US$ 10.30 bn, dropped 6.93% in volume and 3.85% in value terms y-o-y.

Analysts point out that the diamond trade was affected by the sudden demonetisation announced by the Indian government in November last year. Also many polishing units which had shut for the Diwali vacations at that time, further extended their holidays in 2016 as a result. Also, this year, the Diwali festival and annual vacation fell in October, and polishing units re-opened in early November. Both these factors had an impact on the year-on-year comparison of trading figures.

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