View Full Version : Surat Diamond Industry
November 20th, 2011, 08:35 AM
Surat is famous for its diamond industry and textile industry, along with silk and chemicals. It is at the heart of the world's diamond-polishing industry, which in 2005 cut 92% of the world's diamond pieces and earned India $15 billion in exports. Gujarati diamond cutters emigrating from East Africa established the industry in 1901 and by the 1970s Surat-based diamond cutters began exporting stones to the US for the first time. Though much of the polishing work takes place on small weight stones, Surat's workshops have set their eyes on the lucrative market for finishing larger, pricier stones in the future.
The 18 November 2008 issue of the Wall Street Journal had an article about the diamond industry in Surat. It claims that 80% of the world's finished diamonds are cut and polished in this city.
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November 20th, 2011, 08:36 AM
SURAT: Surat Rough Diamond Sourcing India Limited (SRDSIL), a diamond consortium formed by the big, small and medium diamantaires, will be selling $5.2 million worth of rough diamonds, its first batch, directly sourced from Alrosa, the world's biggest diamond mining company based in Russia, in the second week of December.
"SRDSIL has been successful in signing a long-term supply contract with Alrosa. The first batch of $5.2 million worth of rough diamonds has arrived from Russia. We plan to sell it through multiple ways, including auction tender and direct sale, to shareholders and other small and medium diamantaires in the second week of December," SRDSIL chairman Ashit Mehta told TOI from Antwerp.
After lying dormant since its inception in August 2011, SRDSIL has sprung back to life by securing the first direct supply from Alrosa.
"It is a long-term contract with Alrosa. We will be getting an assured rough diamond supply of $5.2 million every month. It may happen that we may get more than $5.2 million worth of supply in the following months," Mehta said.
About the rough imports from Zimbabwe, Mehta said the diamond consortium will visit Zimbabwe after holding the first successful sale of the rough diamonds sourced from Russia.
"Let the small diamond miners and global mining giants in the world watch the first official sale of rough diamonds in the second week of December in Surat. After the success, we plan to visit Zimbabwe to secure rough supplies from the Marange diamond field," Mehta added.
About six SRDSIL directors led by Mehta visited Moscow on Monday last to seal the deal with the the officials of Alrosa, a Russian state mining company.
India, especially Surat, is the biggest consumer of Russian goods. About 25 per cent of rough diamonds from Alrosa come directly to the country through the three-year supply contract worth $1.5 billion with 12 leading Indian diamond companies like Rosy Blue, Arjav Diamonds NV, Diamond India Limited (DIL) Ratilal and Becharlal & Sons etc. The rest come into the country via Dubai and Antwerp.
India consumes about 80 per cent of rough diamonds produced by Alrosa. Last year, out of the total Rs 25,000 crore worth of rough goods sold annually by Alrosa, about Rs19,000 crore worth of goods came to India through direct and indirect channels.
As per trade statistics by Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), India imported $11 billion worth of rough diamonds in 2010-11.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/SRDSIL-to-sell-Russian-diamonds-worth-5-2-mn/articleshow/10796783.cms
November 20th, 2011, 08:37 AM
SURAT: The diamond city is all set to glitter with the fifth consecutive gems and jewellery event 'Sparkle International-2011' organized by the Southern Gujarat Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SGCCI), starting from December 16.
The four-day gems and jewellery event to be held at the state's first pillar less dome shaped Surat International Exhibition and Convention Centre (SIECC) at Sarsana is likely to see participation from leading diamond and jewellery companies from Surat, Mumbai and other parts of the country.
Official sources said about 200 exhibitors from segments like loose polished diamonds, diamond and studded jewellery, gold and silver jewellery are likely to participate in the event."This time around, the gems and jewellery event will see the participation of leading jewellery firms from Japan, Hong Kong, Bangkok and Sri Lanka. We intend to create a separate international pavilion where visitors would get an opportunity to look at the jewellery trends in the world," president Rohit Mehta said.
According to Mehta, the event has been supported by Surat diamond industry as well as the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC). Sparkle has become an attraction after the GJEPC's India International Jewellery Show (IIJS) in Mumbai.
"In all the previous gems and jewellery shows organized by SGCCI, the exhibitors have received overwhelming response from the consumers in the diamond city and other cities. We hope the event to receive same response this year as well," SGCCI vice-president Paresh Patel said
November 20th, 2011, 08:38 AM
SURAT: Southern Gujarat Chamber of Commerce and Industry ( has urged Turkey's minister of economy Zafer Caglayan to abolish 20% luxury tax on polished diamond import into that country to increase bilateral trade with India.
An SGCCI delegation under Rohit Mehta's leadership had on Wednesday met a Turkish delegation led by Zafer Caglayan in Mumbai. It had members of Turkish Jewellery Association and Istanbul Chamber of Commerce.
Turkey is the fourth-largest market for gold jewellery and has become one of the world's biggest centres of jewellery production, rivaling Italy, the established leader.
Recently, the Istanbul Gold Exchange began operating a new market in diamonds, seeking to cater to the changing fashions in Turkey's jewellery market. A report by Diamond Trading Company (DTC), a subsidiary of De Beers, estimated the value of Turkey's diamond market at $1 billion.
"The bilateral trade in polished diamonds between India and Turkey is set to grow, provided the 20% tax regime is abolished. We have urged the Republic of Turkey to abolish the tax in order to help increase exports of polished diamonds from Surat," said Rohit Mehta, president of SGCCI.
"It is estimated that about 80% of diamonds imported by Turkey comes from India. If the tax is abolished, the polished diamond exports from India to Turkey will further increase," Mehta added.
He said a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed by the SGCCI and the Istanbul Chamber of Commerce president Murat Yalcintas for exchange of key business information.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/SGCCI-urges-Turkey-to-abolish-20-tax-on-polished-diamond-import/articleshow/10773035.cms
November 20th, 2011, 08:40 AM
SURAT: Family members and relatives of the 22 jailed Indian diamond traders in China can expect something positive in the coming days. Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi, who was recently on a four-day visit to China, had taken up the issue with Chinese authorities of the Indians jailed there since January 2010.
President of Reliance Industries Limited (RIL), Hazira, Hemant Desai, who was a member of the business delegation of Gujarat led by Modi to China, said, "CM has requested the Chinese authorities to release the 22 Indian diamond traders languishing in their jail as early as possible." Desai said the China visit was very successful in generating Chinese interest in Gujarat. They were particularly interested in the automobile sector and in areas like low-cost anti-quake housing and finance and research and development in disaster management, eco-friendly port led city development, mass rail transportation and value-added castor agro-industry.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Kin-of-jailed-diamond-traders-in-China-hopeful-of-positive-outcome/articleshow/10731647.cms
November 20th, 2011, 08:41 AM
SURAT: The diamond cutting and polishing centre in the world, mainly India, Israel and Belgium would be processing more than $17 billion worth of rough diamonds this year, a 27 per cent increase over the $13 billion in 2010.
Reason: opening of the new rough diamond source in Zimbabwe's Marange diamond field for the Indian diamond cutters and polishers with the export clearance from Kimberley Process (KP) and the strong demand for polished diamonds from India, China, Hong Kong, UAE and other European markets markets.
In his recent observation, Moti Ganz president of International Diamond Manufacturers Association ( IDMA) stated that the fourth-quarter rough diamond demand will be about $1.2 billion less than the $4.6 billion worth of goods sold in each of the first three quarters of the year. The reason being the reduced demand for cheaper and small diamonds in the US, which has been partly offset by the strong demand from the Indian and Chinese domestic markets.
Ganz said that not only the rough diamond supply will be increased by 27 per cent from $ 13 billion to $17 billion this year, but the diamonds available to the jewellery sector across the world would grow by about 5.3 per cent from $18.9 billion sold last year to $22 billion this year.
India, especially Surat is the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre manufacturing about 70 per cent of the rough diamonds mined across the world. As per the statistics from the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), India imported rough diamonds worth $11 billion in 2010-11.
Industry sources said the flow of Zimbabwe rough diamonds is expected to start from the first week of December. The rough diamond prices have decreased by about 10-15 per cent in the last two months and that it is expected to go down further following the Zimbabwe development.
"We expect the rough diamond prices to decrease by another 5 to 10 per cent before December. This year, the import of rough diamond is also likely to increase from the previous year," said a DTC sightholder.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Diamond-cutting-centres-to-process-17bn-roughs-this-yr/articleshow/10671370.cms
November 20th, 2011, 08:42 AM
SURAT: Diamantaires here hope that more of them will become sightholders- selected clients of the Diamond Trading Company (DTC) on December 5, when it announces its new list of sightholders for the three-year contract period beginning April 1. DTC is the rough diamond distribution arm of the world's biggest diamond mining company, De Beers.
The DTC, which has average annual rough diamond sales worth $5.5 billion, has 67 sightholders-diamond companies--out of which 50 per cent are the top Indian diamond companies. A sightholder is a customer of the DTC, and is supplied with rough diamonds through 10 sales sight organised every year. Presently, there about 33 Indian DTC sightholders.
Varda Shine, CEO of DTC, too, had indicated this during her visit to Surat earlier this year. "In all likelihood, most of the new sightholders are going to be Indians. They have the most sophisticated, innovative and successful business sense,'' she had told TOI.
India is by far the largest diamond cutting centre and largest customer of rough diamonds, responsible for 72 per cent of the worldwide consumption-the annual rough diamond demand is pegged between Rs 40,000 crore to Rs.45,000 crore. China and Israel are distant second and third respectively, with only 11 per cent and 7 per cent of global rough consumption, respectively.
The rush for rough diamonds in India has already started as the consumer demand for diamond jewellery is increasing from India, U.S and China in the backdrop of the dwindling rough diamond supplies.
Diamond miners in the world are struggling to keep pace with growing consumption in emerging economies as older mines are exhausted and producers lack new discoveries. Prices of rough, or unpolished, diamonds have risen as much as 50 percent from a six-year low in early 2009 as jewellery sales collapsed.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Surat-eyes-bigger-share-of-diamond-pie/articleshow/10659331.cms
November 20th, 2011, 08:47 AM
SURAT: The world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat will also become the biggest centre processing the rough diamonds from Zimbabwe in the next few years. This is because Zimbabwe's Marange diamond field has the annual capacity to produce about $4 billion worth of rough diamonds.
EG Cross, a member from Bulawayo south constituency of Zimbabwe, recently in a detailed presentation to the Zimbabwe House of Assembly stated that mining companies - Mbada Diamonds, Anjin and Marange Resources - have been collectively producing rough diamonds worth $4 billion from Marange diamond field per annum.
Until now, diamantaires in Surat were going by the official production statistic of Zimbabwe government about Marange diamond field which was estimated to be worth $2 billion per annum. The presentation by the member of Zimbabwe parliament has made the diamantaires in Surat happy.
Cross stated that the Marange diamond field produced 15 per cent good quality gem stones and 85 per cent industrial diamonds. The average price achieved on gem stones was $350 per carat in 2010, while industrial diamonds realised between $31 and $3 per carat.
Industry experts said the statement of the member of Zimbabwe House of Assembly has heated up the market in the diamond city. Surat is the biggest consumer of Zimbabwe diamonds and about 90 per cent of the $4 billion worth of rough diamonds would arrive in Surat every year.
"Till now, we were under the impression that Marange diamond field has an annual production capacity of $2 billion worth of rough diamonds. The recent statement by a senior member of Zimbabwe parliament has revealed the actual production figure of Marange, which is quite huge," said Ashit Mehta, chairman, Surat Rough Diamond Sourcing India Limited (SRDSIL).
The annual demand of rough diamonds in the industry is estimated between $10 and $11 billion per annum. As per the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) statistics, India imported $11 billion worth of rough diamonds in 2010-11.
"This year, the total import of rough diamonds is likely to increase following Kimberley Process Certification Scheme's export clearance to Zimbabwe," said Mehta.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Surat-to-be-biggest-centre-processing-Zimbabwe-roughs/articleshow/10646904.cms
November 20th, 2011, 08:48 AM
SURAT: Diamantaires here are surprised that the Oppenheimer family has sold its stake in De Beers, the world's largest diamond mining company, but they don't feel that there is anything to fear as new owner Anglo American Plc is an equally competent player in the diamond business.
The Oppenheimers ended the family's 80-year ownership by selling 40 per cent of their stake, worth $ 5.1 billion, to London-based Anglo American.
"We are surprised, but at the same time pleased that De Beers is in safe hands. Anglo American Plc is one of the largest mining companies and leader in platinum and diamond headquartered in UK. They will continue the diamond legacy for the coming decades," chairman of Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) Rajiv Jain said.
Asked whether there will be any immediate effects on the Indian diamond industry, Jain said, "India is the ultimate consumer of rough diamonds and Anglo American has to sell its product. There may be some changes in the diamond supply business, but it will not affect us." Analysts say that with China, India and the Gulf expected to equal the biggest present diamond consumer - the US, with a 40 per cent global share - by 2015, it is quite clear where Anglo American's attentions will lie.
De Beers was established in 1888 in South Africa. The Oppenheimers have been involved at De Beers since 1927, when Ernst Oppenheimer, who founded Anglo American a decade earlier, wrested control of the group. Its corporate slogan, 'a diamond is forever', was created in 1947 and is considered the greatest advertising line of 20th century.
Anglo American has a deep knowledge and understanding of De Beers and an appreciation for the unique nature of diamonds, having been the company's largest shareholder since De Beers became a private company in 2001 and as a longstanding shareholder in De Beers prior to that.
Vice-chairman of GJEPC Sanjay Kothari said, "We hope that the present system of diamond distribution is not changed. Anglo American is well positioned to enhance the value of De Beers through its expertise and scale in such areas as technical, supply chain and financial management functions as part of a simplified and more integrated ownership structure."
Chairman Ashit Mehta of Blue Star Group, a Diamond Trading Compay (DTC) sightholder, said, "DTC is the rough diamond marketing arm of De Beers. Anglo is equally competent in the diamond exploration and marketing business. DTC sigholders need not have to worry as we are in safe hands."
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/De-Beers-is-in-safe-hands-say-Surat-diamantaires/articleshow/10628983.cms
November 20th, 2011, 08:49 AM
SURAT: The Surat Rough Diamond Sourcing India Limited (SRDSIL), a consortium of 1,500 diamantaires that had been lying dormant since its inception in August 2011, sprang to life after the international diamond watchdog, Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS), cleared the export of rough diamonds from two mining sites in Zimbabwe's Marange diamond field. SRDSIL office-bearers will visit Zimbabwe in the third week of November to revive the rough diamond deal with Zimbabwe Diamond Consortium (ZDC).
In October-2010, SRDSIL and ZDC had signed a deal for the supply of $1.2 billion worth of rough diamonds from Marange diamond field in exchange for training its 1,000 unemployed youths in diamond cutting and polishing. But, the deal was put on the backburner after the KPCS's plenary meeting in Israel in November banned the export of rough diamonds from Zimbabwe's controversial Marange diamond field.
Industry sources said the direct sourcing of rough diamonds from Zimbabwe and Russia by SRDSIL is going to benefit the small and medium diamantaires who will be able to purchase rough diamonds through an auction in Surat without going to Antwerp and thereby reducing the role of the diamond brokers.
Some of the SRDSIL office-bearers met in Antwerp on Wednesday under the leadership of their chairman, Ashit Mehta, immediately after the KPCS's approval to Zimbabwe for exporting rough diamonds.
Speaking to TOI from Antwerp, Ashit Mehta said, "The diamond consortium has got back its lost sparkle following KP's decision on Zimbabwe. We are planning to import the first shipment of rough diamonds from Zimbabwe as soon as possible."
"The diamond consortium's foundation was laid keeping in mind the huge stockpile of rough diamonds with Zimbabwe worth $5 billion. Only Surat has the potential to process Zimbabwe diamonds and thus the consortium is looking to import majority of the diamond produced in Zimbabwe," said Mehta.
Mehta said a day prior to the KP development in Kinshasa, the SRDSIL got an invitation from Alrosa Limited, a state owned diamond giant in Russia, for discussing the long term contract of supplying rough diamonds.
"Six of our SRDSIL directors are going to Russia next week where we probably plan to seal a long term contract for rough diamonds supplies from Alrosa. After that we plan to fly to Zimbabwe to work out the $1.2 billion deal, so that we can hold first official rough diamond auction in Surat sometime in December," said Mehta.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Surat-diamond-consortium-springs-back-to-life/articleshow/10598508.cms
November 21st, 2011, 07:39 PM
SURAT: Relations between the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat and the Kingdom of Lesotho-which has diamond mines-are set to become stronger with the appointment of Kishore Virani aka Kishore Maldar, chairman of the Surat-based K.A.R.P Impex, a leading diamond company, as the honorary Consul-General for Gujarat and Maharashtra.
"I am honoured and happy on being appointed as the Honorary Consul representing the Kingdom of Lesotho, a country that produces the world's most expensive rough diamonds," said Virani.
Virani shot into the limelight in 2008 with the purchase of a 128-carat rough diamond worth $12.13 million, the costliest and biggest rough diamond brought for the first time in Gujarat from a South African mine.
Virani will be the face of Kingdom of Lesotho in Gujarat and Maharashtra. He said diamantaires and people from the realty business have a big opportunity to explore business in Lesotho.
In 2010, more than 500 rough diamonds bigger than 10.8 carats were recovered at Letseng mine in Lesotho. In the fourth quarter of 2010, three astonishing stones were recovered, weighing at 196 carats, 186 carats and 116 carats, and they sold for a total of $28.5 million.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Diamantaire-appointed-Honorary-Consul-by-Kingdom-of-Lesotho/articleshow/10821117.cms
November 22nd, 2011, 07:47 PM
SURAT: The sparkling gem is set to become costlier in the jewellery stores across the country with the rupee hitting an all time low at 52 against the dollar.
Industry sources said consumers of polished diamonds and diamond jewellery in the country will have to pay more as the diamond prices are billed in dollars.
For example, a 3 carat diamond valued at $350 per carat was available for Rs.47,250 a few months ago when Rs.45 was equivalent to a dollar. Now, the same piece could be priced at Rs.54,600 in the jewellery stores. However, the difference is of Rs 7,350 per piece.
"The polished diamonds have become costlier, at least for the Indian consumers due to the weakening of Indian rupee. Since the polished diamonds are traded in dollars, the consumers will have to pay more," said Ashit Mehta, chairman, Blue Star diamond company.
This also means that the diamond-studded jewellery will also become costly for the Indian consumers.
Praveen Nanavaty, chairman of Surat-based jewellery company, SHE Jewels, said, "Polished diamonds of various size, shapes and colours are studded in the gold and silver jewellery. We have to calculate the price of polished stones in dollars. However, the stone which cost Rs 80,000 a few months ago would now cost above Rs 1 lakh due to the weakening of rupee. This will affect the overall pricing of the jewellery piece."
As per the official statistics from the gems and jewellery industry, the polished diamond market in India is pegged at $4.5 billion per annum. In the past couple of years, the sale of polished diamonds is growing at the rate of 40 per cent year-on-year and that it is expect to touch $6 billion by 2015.
Sanjay Kothari, vice-chairman of Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), said, "The weakening rupee will put a price pressure on the Indian consumers buying polished diamonds. But, this will not erode the profit margins of the exporters and the dealers of polished diamonds in the country".
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Rupee-fall-to-make-diamonds-costlier/articleshow/10834112.cms
November 23rd, 2011, 06:58 AM
SURAT: Surat Rough Diamond Sourcing India Limited (SRDSIL), which eyes a long-term agreement with the Russian mining giant Alrosa, plans to put the diamonds worth $5.2 million which it received from the company for viewing by its shareholders and other small and medium diamantaires in Surat in December first week.
"We have been successful in breaking ice with the Russian mining giant in the very first meeting this week," said Ashit Mehta, chairman, SRDSIL. "We will continue to receive supplies from Alrosa on a monthly basis and we hope this may eventually convert into a long-term agreement," he added.
Mehta said it is a global practice to put rough diamonds for viewing before selling it through multiple ways -auction, tender, etc - to the diamantaires. Once the viewing procedure ends in a week's time, the office-bearers will decide on fixing a date to sell the goods.
Industry sources said Alrosa is very selective when it comes to choosing its clients for a long-term contract. The company sells about 70 per cent of its goods through long-term contract to five Russian manufacturers, 15 companies headquartered in Belgium and three Indian companies.
"The Alrosa management is very selective about its clients. It is a big achievement for the new company like SRDSIL to secure $5.2 million worth of goods as a regular monthly supply," a DTC sightholder said.
Sources said in the first nine months, Alrosa sold approximately $1.3 billion worth of goods to its Belgium clients, while sales to Russian company amounted to a bit over $1 billion and to the three Indian companies - Jasani Group, Rosy Blue and Diamond India Limited - to around $300 million.
"All the long-term agreements with the Indian companies were signed in 2010. We hope that SRDSIL could become the fourth Indian diamond company to sign a long-term agreement in the coming months," said Chandrakant Sanghavi, director of SRDSIL.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/SRDSIL-eyes-agreement-with-Russian-giant-Alrosa/articleshow/10834211.cms
November 26th, 2011, 01:11 PM
સુરતને મરાંગેના હીરા ખરીદવા કેન્દ્ર સરકારની મંજૂરી
મરાંગેનાં પાર્સલ રિલીઝ કરવા કસ્ટમ્સને પણ સૂચના અપાઈ
ઝિમ્બાબ્વેની મરાંગે ખાણના હીરા ખરીદવા પર કેન્દ્ર સરકારે મુકેલો પ્રતિબંધ શુક્રવારે ઉઠાવી લેતાં સુરતના હીરા ઉદ્યોગકારોમાં ખુશીનું મોજું ફરી વળ્યું છે. કેન્દ્ર સરકારે ૧૮મી નવેમ્બર ૨૦૧૦ના રોજ આ પ્રતિબંધ મુકયો હતો. પમી નવેમ્બર ૨૦૧૧ના દિવસે કોંગોમાં મળેલી કેપીસીના તમામ ૭૫ સભ્ય દેશોની બેઠકમાં ઝિમ્બાબ્વેની મરાંગે ખાણ પરનો પ્રતિબંધ ઉઠાવી લેવાતાં કેન્દ્ર સરકારે શુક્રવારે આ પ્રતિબંધ દૂર કર્યો હતો.
પ્રતિબંધ ઉઠાવી લેવાતાં હવે મરાંગેની ખાણમાંથી નીકળતાં હીરાને કેપીસી મળી શકશે અને તેથી સુરતમાં તેની સીધી આયાત કરી શકાશે. આ આયાત વધવાને કારણે સુરતના હીરા ઉદ્યોગને રફનો પુરવઠો વધુ આસાનીથી અને વધુ પ્રમાણમાં મળતો થશે. કેન્દ્ર સરકારે કસ્ટમ્સના સત્તાવાળાઓને મરાંગેના પાર્સલ રિલીઝ કરવાની સૂચના પણ આપી દીધી છે.
ઝિમ્બાબ્વેના મરાંગે ડાયમંડ માઇન્સ પર ૨૦૦૯થી કિમ્બર્લી પ્રોસેસ સર્ટિફિકેશન સ્કીમે માનવ અધિકાર હનનના આરોપ હેઠળ પ્રતિબંધ મૂક્યો હતો. એ પછી ૭૫ દેશોની વારંવારની મિટિંગ પછી મોટા ભાગના દેશો પ્રતિબંધ હટાવી લેવા સંમત થયા હતા પણ અમેરિકા રાજી નહોતું એટલે ઝિમ્બાબ્વેના પ્રતિબંધનો ઉકેલ આવતો નહોતો.
અમેરિકા સાથેના સારા સંબંધોને કારણે કેન્દ્રના વેપાર અને વાણિજ્ય મંત્રાલયે જેમ એન્ડ જવેલરી એક્સપોર્ટ પ્રમોશન કાઉન્સિલને પત્ર લખીને જાણ કરી હતી કે જ્યાં સુધી મરાંગે માઇન્સના હીરાને કેપી નહીં મળે ત્યાં સુધી કોઇપણ હીરાના વેપારીઓએ આ હીરાની ખરીદી કરવી નહીં.
ઉપરાંત આદેશ ભંગ કરનાર સામે કડક પગલા ભરવાની પણ સૂચના અપાઈ હતી. ભારતે આવું પગલું અમેરિકાની એવી ધમકીને કારણે લેવું પડ્યું હતું કે જે કોઈ મરાંગેના હીરા ખરીદશે તેને અમેરિકા બ્લેક લિસ્ટેડ કરશે. અમેરિકામાં ભારતના જેમ એન્ડ જવેલરીની ૫૦ ટકા કરતાં વધુ નિકાસ થાય છે. જો અમેરિકા આડુંઅવળું થાય તો ભારતના જેમ એન્ડ જવેલરીના ધંધાને મોટો ફટકો પડે. હવે તાજેતરમાં કોંગો ખાતેની મિટિંગમાં સર્વસમંતિથી મરાંગે પરનો પ્રતિબંધ ઉઠાવી લેવાયો છે અને અમેરિકાએ પણ સમંતિ આપી દીધી છે, એટલે ભારત સરકારે શુક્રવારે જીજેઇપીસીને સૂચના આપી છે કે હવે મરાંગેના હીરા ભારતના વેપારીઓ ખરીદે તો વાંધો નથી.
રફની સમસ્યા દૂર થશે
વેપાર અને વાણિજ્ય મંત્રાલયે મરાંગેના હીરા ખરીદવાની છુટ આપી છે અને જીજેઇપીસીને પત્ર લખીને જાણ કરી છે. કસ્ટમ્સને પણ મરાંગેનાં પાર્સલ રિલીઝ કરવાના ઓર્ડર અપાયા છે. આને કારણે સુરતના હીરાઉદ્યોગને મોટી રાહત થશે. સુરતમાં રફના પુરવઠાની સમસ્યા દૂર થશે. ચંદ્રકાંતભાઈ સંઘવી, રજિનલ ચેરમેન, જીજેઈપીસી
November 27th, 2011, 12:01 PM
મરાંગે માઇન્સમાંથી વર્ષે ૧૦,૦૦૦ કરોડના હીરા નીકળશે
ઝિમ્બાબ્વેની મરાંગે ડાયમંડ માઇન્સ પર કેપીએ ઉઠાવેલા પ્રતિબંધ બાદ શુક્રવારે ભારત સરકારે પણ હીરાના વેપારીઓને મરાંગેના હીરા ખરીદવાની પરવાનગી આપી દેતા હવે સુરતના હીરાઉદ્યોગકારો માટે તમામ અંતરાયો દુર થયા છે.સુરત રફ ડાયમંડ સોર્સિંગ ઇન્ડિયા લિમિટેડ (એસઆરડીએસએલ) એકાદ સપ્તાહ પછી ઝિમ્બાબ્વે જશે.
આગામી સપ્તાહમાં વેપારીઓની બેઠક મળવાની છે. સુરત માટે આ એક મહત્વનું કદમ સાબિત થશે કારણ કે મરાંગેની ડાયમંડ માઇન્સમાંથી વર્ષે દિવસે ૧૦,૦૦૦ કરોડના હીરા નિકળવાના છે.સુરત વિશ્વના કુલ હીરાના ઉત્પાદનમાં ૮૦ ટકા હિસ્સો ધરાવે છે ,એટલે સ્વાભાવિક રીતે જ ઝિમ્બાબ્વેના હીરા સુરતને જ મળવાના છે.
એસઆરડીએસએલના સભ્યોએ કહ્યું હતું કે, સરકાર જ્યાં સુધી પરવાનગી ન આપે ત્યાં સુધી અમારા હાથ બંધાયેલા હતા.પણ હવે હવે અમારા માટે તમામ અંતરાયો દુર થયા છે.આગામી સપ્તાહમાં જ એસઆરડીએસએલના સભ્યોની મિટિંગ મળવાની છે. એ પછી સભ્યો ઝિમ્બાબ્વે જઇને રફ લાવશે અને કરારની પ્રક્રિયા પણ હાથ ધરશે.
સુરતને શું ફાયદો થશે
સૌથી મોટો ફાયદો નાના કારખાનદારોને થશે કારણ કે કારખાનેદારોને ઘણા વખત હીરાની અછતનો સામનો કરવો પડે છે.એસઆરડીએસએલ ટેન્ડર દ્રારા નાના કારખાનેદારોને પણ રફ આપવાની છે.
અન્ય માઇન્સની મોનોપોલી તૂટશે
અત્યાર સુધી ડિબિયર્સ,અલરોઝા,રિઓ ટિન્ટો જેવી ડાયમંડ માઇન્સ કંપનીઓ પાસેથી સુરતના ડાયમંડ મેન્યુફેકચસેg હીરા ખરીદવા પડે છે.સુરતની રફની જે ડિમાન્ડ છે તેની સામે આ માઇનીંગ કંપનીઓનો પુરવઠો પુરો પડતો નથી.પરિણામે વેપારીઓએ ઉંચા ભાવે રફ ખરીદવી પડે છે.કંપનીઓ પણ મોનોપોલી હોવાને કારણે ભરપુર લાભ ઉઠાવી રહી છે.પણ હવે આ મોનોપોલી દુર થશે કારણ કે ઝિમ્બાબ્વેની ડાયમંડ માઇન્સમાંથી વિશાળ જથ્થો નિકાસ માટે તૈયાર છે.માગ સામે પુરવઠો વધવાને કારણે બીજી કંપનીઓની મોનોપોલી તો તુટશે જ પણ સાથોસાથ રફના ભાવ પણ ઘટશે.કદાચ ભાવ નહીં પણ ઘટે તો પણ ભાવ વધવાની શક્યતા ઓછી થઈ જશે.
Central govt and KP has left the banned of purchasing Diamonds from Marange fields which good for Surat traders now SRDSIL will go to Zimbabve next week
Traders are going to meet next week and its very important for Diamond Industry as Rs 10 K crores are produced in Marange and most of the diamonds will reached Surat as 80% of the world diamonds are polished here.
November 28th, 2011, 12:41 PM
To sell Zimbabve diamonds office will be open in Dubai & Antwerp
૨૦ લાખ કેરેટ હીરા નું વેચાણ કરવાની યોજના, વર્ષે ૧૦ હજાર કરોડની આવકની આશા
ઝિમ્બાબ્વે મરાંગે ડાયમંડ માઇન્સના ૨૦ લાખ કેરેટ હીરા વેચવા માટે બેલ્જીયમના એન્ટવર્પમાં અને યુનાઇટેડ આરબ અમીરાતના દુબઈમાં સેટેલાઇટ ઓફિસ શરૂ કરશે.બનેં દેશો સાથે વાટાઘાટો ચાલી રહી છે એમ ઝિમ્બાબ્વેના માઇન્સ અને માઇનીંગ ડેવલપમેન્ટ મિનસ્ટિર ઓબર્ટ મોફુએ શનિવારે હરારેની એક બેઠકમાં જણાવ્યું હતું.
ઓબર્ટ મોફુએ કહ્યું હતું કે, મરાંગે ડાયમંડ માઇન્સના ૨૦ લાખ કેરેટ હીરા વેચવા માટે ઝિમ્બાબ્વે એન્ટવર્પ અને દુબઇમાં ઓફિસ શરુ કરશે.આ માઇન્સમાંથી વર્ષે રૂપિયા ૧૦,૦૦૦ કરોડની કમાણી થવાની અમારી ધારણાં છે.બેલ્જીયમ અને યુએઈની સરકાર સાથે ઓફિસ શરૂ કરવા માટે કરાર કરવામાં આવશે.મોફુએ વધુમાં કહ્યું હતું કે, વિશ્વની કુલ હીરાની માગનો ૨૫ ટકા હિસ્સો મરાંગેની માઇન્સ પુરો કરશે
They have planned to sell 20 k carats of Diamonds worth 10 k crores and to sell they are planning to open office in Dubai & Antwerp
Source - http://www.divyabhaskar.co.in/article/DGUJ-SUR-zimbabwe-open-office-in-dubai-for-selling-diamond-2598088.html
November 30th, 2011, 09:47 PM
ગુજરાત સરકાર પહેલ કરે તો સુરતના વેપારીઓએ એન્ટવર્પ કે દુબઈ જવુ પડે નહીં
ઝિમ્બાબ્વે હીરા વેચવા દુબઈ અને એન્ટવર્પમાં ઓફિસ શરૂ કરવાનું છે તે વાતે હીરાઉદ્યોગમાં કચવાટ છે. જ્યારે સુરત વિશ્વભરમાં ડાયમંડ કટિંગ અને પોલિશિંગમાં મોખરે છે, ત્યારે સુરતમાં ઝિમ્બાબ્વેની ઓફિસ શા કારણે શરૂ ન થઈ શકે? જીજેઇપીસીએ સરકારને કહેવું જોઇએ કે ઝિમ્બાબ્વે ભારતમાં ઓફિસ શરૂ કરે તે માટે સરકાર પહેલ કરે. જોકે, કેટલાક હીરાઉદ્યોગકારોનું કહેવું છે કે ગુજરાત સરકારે અથવા મિનરલ્સ એન્ડ મેટલ્સ ટ્રેડિંગ કોર્પોરેશને(એમએમટીસી) તે અંગે પહેલ કરવી જોઇએ. બીજી તરફ જીજેઇપીસીનું કહેવું છે કે અમે સરકારને કહીએ છીએ પણ કામ થતું નથી?
મરાંગેના ૨૦ લાખ કેરેટ હીરા વેચાવાના છે અને સૌથી વધારે માલ સુરત જ ખરીદવાનું છે, ત્યારે આપણે હીરા ખરીદવા દુબઇ અને એન્ટવર્પ જવાનું? જેમ એન્ડ જવેલરી એક્સપોર્ટ પ્રમોશન કાઉન્સિલ ભારત સરકારને કહે કે ઝિમ્બાબ્વેની ઓફિસ સુરત અથવા મુંબઈમાં ખૂલે તો કારખાનેદારોને રફ ખરીદવામાં સરળતા રહે.
દુબઇમાં કોઈ ટેક્સ નથી..
અમે ભારત સરકારને જાણ કરી છે દુબઈમાં ટેક્સ નથી અને એન્ટવર્પમાં ટેક્સ છે પણ તે મામૂલી છે. બીજું કે આ દેશો અનેક સુવિધા પૂરી પાડવા સમક્ષ છે, જે વાત ભારતમાં શક્ય નથી.’ સંજય કોઠારી , ઉપાધ્યક્ષ, જીજેઇપીસી.
ગુજરાત સરકાર આગળ આવે
મરાંગેના હીરા માટે ગુજરાત સરકાર લીડ લઈ શકે તેમ છે. જો ઝિમ્બાબ્વે સુરતમાં ઓફિસ ખોલે તો ગુજરાતને ફાયદો થવાનો જ છે. એમએમટીસી પણ આ બાબતે લીડ લઈ શકે તેમ છે.’ આશિત મહેતા, ચેરમેન-એસઆરએસડીએલ
If Gujarat govt take initiative then trader did not need to visit Dubai or Antwerp.
Traders are in 2 mind to start office in Dubai/Antwerp to Sell marange diamonds.When most of the diamonds are polished here then why office can't be open in Surat? Traders says that govt shud take Initiative coz if we say to govt work never happens.
Most of the diamonds from Marange are going to be purchased by Surat traders then why they shud go to Dubai/Antwerp.if govt helps opening office in Surat/Mumbai it will be easy for trader to purchase Rough diamonds.
December 6th, 2011, 11:08 AM
SURAT: Even as the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) is still investigating the legality of rough diamonds worth Rs120 crore imported from Zimbabwe by a leading city-based diamond company, the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) has found the import of these roughs legal.
GJEPC has stated that the company has fulfilled all the formalities under the Kimberley Process (KP). "The council is not favouring any diamond firm or its owners. But, the fact is goods seized by the DRI has entered legally in country, fulfilling the requirements of Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS)," vice-chairman of GJEPC Sanjay Kothari said.
"The DRI action on Surat firm will show the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in a bad light at the time when the global human rights watchdogs are opposing the KP's decision allowing Zimbabwe to sell its rough diamonds," Kothari added.
Official sources said the stock seized by DRI is part of the $160 million worth of rough diamonds belonging to the Indian diamond companies, which was seized by Dubai authorities in November following the KP's embargo on the sale of rough diamonds by Zimbabwe at the end of the plenary meeting at Israel held from November 1, 2010, to November 4, 2010. The stocks was later cleared by Dubai after the KP's Working Group of Monitoring (WGM) allowed the release of the goods shipped before the KP's plenary meeting decision.
Last week, the DRI officials had raided the premises of the diamond firm and seized 5 lakh carats of rough diamonds of Zimbabwe origin valued at Rs120 crore. The raids were conducted following a tip off that the rough diamond consignment was brought from Zimbabwe's controversial Marange diamond field via Dubai without following the KPCS requirements.
Industry sources said GJEPC's stand against DRI investigation holds ground as it is the body designated by the central government as 'diamond import and export authority" within the meaning of section IV (b) of the KPCS. This means that all the rough and polished diamond consignment coming and going out of the country is controlled by GJEPC.
As per the law, the imported rough diamond consignment is to be accompanied by a KP certificate issued by the exporting country. The importer has to present the KP certificate and other related documents, such as airway bill, invoice, packing list etc to GJEPC for verification and certification. Once the documents are found in order, GJEPC will give an endorsement stating the goods are found in order.
Later, the importer has to present the KP certificate endorsed by GJEPC along with the required import documents while filing the Bill of Entry for seeking clearance of the rough diamonds by the customs.
"The GJEPC is a designated import and export authority in the country and the DRI should cross check whether the goods are legally imported. There is a procedure through which the diamonds enter into the country and that the company in question has followed it under the KPCS law," a DTC sightholder said.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/GJEPC-backs-Surat-diamond/articleshow/11003030.cms
December 7th, 2011, 05:10 PM
SURAT: A Chinese court in Shenzhen is expected to pronounce its verdict on Wednesday in the $7.3 million diamond smuggling case involving 22 Indian diamond traders.
The diamond traders, mostly Gujaratis, were arrested by Shenzhen customs officials for allegedly smuggling diamonds from Hong Kong to China on January 8, 2010. Shenzhen is a major city in China's Guangdong province close to Hong Kong.
After following the movement of the accused for about two months, the Chinese customs authorities arrested the diamond traders and locked them up in jail. While only two out of 22 arrested are owners of the diamond trading firms, the rest are middle-class staffers of rich diamond merchants from Surat and Mumbai. Central and the state governments had taken up the case with the Chinese government on various occasions.
Recently, chief minister Narendra Modi had urged Chinese authorities to speed up the trial of the imprisoned diamond traders. Meanwhile, family members and a few diamond industry leaders on Tuesday left for China to attend the final hearing in the case. "We are happy that the judgment day has arrived. We are keeping our fingers crossed," said a relative of one of the jailed Indian diamond traders, just before boarding a flight to Beijing. Regional chairman, GJEPC, Chandrakant Sanghavi said, "At the moment, we can only pray for the release of the diamond traders. They have in the jail for almost two years."
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/China-verdict-on-22-Gujarat-diamond-smugglers-today/articleshow/11011090.cms
December 7th, 2011, 07:24 PM
AHMEDABAD: Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday thanked China for acting on his request to speed up the judicial process for 22 Indian diamond traders, most of them from the state, imprisoned there.
"Thankful to China for acting on my request of speeding judicial process for 22 Indians imprisoned there for 2 years," Modi tweeted.
Modi had last month gone on a five-day visit to China to explore investment opportunities here. During his visit the chief minister had also taken up the issue of diamond traders languishing in China's jail, with the ruling Communist Party of China.
Ten of the 22 Indian traders, charged with smuggling diamonds worth $7.3 million into China, were sentenced to varied prison terms ranging from 23 months to six years by a Shenzhen court which ordered the deportation of the remaining 12.
The Shenzhen Intermediate People's Court, which conducted the trial of the diamond traders, sentenced one of them to six years, two to five years each, one to three years and six months and five others to three years each.
One more trader sentenced to one year and 11 months in jail, is likely to be released as his term is complete, according to a member of Indian China Economic and Cultural Council Gujarat (ICECCG) here.
A leading diamond industry body of Surat has welcomed the judgement saying it is a positive steps towards getting justice.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/ahmedabad/Diamond-traders-trial-Modi-thanks-China/articleshow/11022111.cms
December 8th, 2011, 08:03 PM
SURAT: The diamond industry is planning a low-key welcome for the 13 diamond merchants acquitted of smuggling by a Chinese court but the Congress and the BJP held separate street celebrations to claim credit for their release.
While the Congress said that this was the result of two years of efforts by the UPA government, the BJP claimed that it was Gujarat CM Narendra Modi's efforts during his recent China visit that helped expedite the trial.
As Modi tweeted thanking the Chinese authorities for considering his plea for speedy trial in the diamond smuggling case involving 22 Gujarati diamond merchants immediately, Congress leaders in the city were quick enough to release an official media communique lauding the efforts of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Congress Chief Sonia Gandhi and Ahmed Patel for their efforts in securing the release of the 13 diamond merchants.
The real drama unfolded at Mangarh Chowk at Varachha - a diamond hub - when the Congress workers and leaders led by City Congress president Ashok Jirawala shouted slogans and burst fire crackers taking credit of their party leaders and UPA government for the release of the diamond merchants.
Ashok Jirawala, president of Surat City Congress Committee, told TOI, "It was a mere coincidence that Modi visited China last month but, the credit for the release of diamond merchants goes to the two years long efforts by the UPA government."
"If Modi feels that he was the one responsible for their release, I would humbly request him to visit Pakistan and see that hundreds of our innocent fishermen are released soon," he said.
City BJP president Purnesh Modi, Mayor Raju Desai and other senior leaders organised a massive rally at Mahidharpura diamond market to hail the efforts of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi. Hundreds of BJP supporters had gathered at the rally that started from Mahidharpura Jadakhadi with pro-Modi slogans.
BJP leaders said Modi's diplomatic efforts and statesmanship during his China visit had resulted in a great relief to 22 Indian diamond traders, mostly from Surat and Mumbai, arrested in China since January 2010. The efforts made so far for their release had not yielded any results. However, after Modi took up the matter with Chinese authorities, the case was expedited and judgment was delivered on Wednesday.
While the BJP and Congress are busying taking credit of the issue, diamond industry leaders believe the welcome of the 13 diamond merchants, who are likely to arrive home latest by Saturday, would be a low-key affair.
"We plan a low-key welcome for the 13 diamond traders released by China" says Dinesh Navadia, president, Surat Diamond Association (SDA).
"All are happy with the Chinese court's verdict, but the welcome of the traders in the city would be on a low key because nine of our men are still serving additional jail terms ranging from one to six years" said Dinesh Navadia, president, Surat Diamond Association (SDA).
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Congress-BJP-vie-to-take-credit-for-release-of-diamond-merchants/articleshow/11036545.cms
December 8th, 2011, 11:12 PM
congressis are brainless zombies... please kick out these bastards as soon as possible
December 11th, 2011, 08:00 AM
SURAT: Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) has urged Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) to speed up its investigation in the Rs 120 crore worth of rough diamond seizure case involving a city-based leading diamond company.
Even after 10 days, the DRI officials are yet to find out any evidence to show that the rough diamonds originating from Zimbabwe were brought through illegal channels in India.
On November 30, DRI officials had raided the premises of the diamond company at A K Road and seized 5 lakh carats of rough diamonds of Zimbabwe origin valued at Rs 120 crore. The raids were conducted following a tip-off that the rough diamond consignment was brought from Zimbabwe's controversial Marange diamond field via Dubai without following the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) requirements.
Official sources said the rough stock seized by the DRI is part of the $160 million worth of rough diamonds belonging to Indian diamond companies, which was seized in Dubai in November following KP's embargo on the sale of rough diamonds by Zimbabwe at the end of the plenary meeting in Israel from November 1, 2010 to November 4, 2010. However, the goods were cleared for export from Dubai after KP's Working Group of Monitoring (WGM) gave a go ahead.
The GJEPC has favoured the diamond company after verifying all the details regarding the import of rough diamonds seized by the DRI. The GJEPC also submitted the documents to show legal entry of the stock in India and the company's commitment in fulfilling the formalities under the KPCS.
Official sources said the goods seized by DRI is meant for distribution to the members - small, big and medium diamantaires - of Surat Rough Diamond Sourcing India Limited (SRDSIL). The diamond company's owner happens to be an important official of SRDSIL and had kept the goods in his diamond firm.
"We have urged the DRI officials to release the goods. Despite submitting all the proofs and evidence showing that the company has followed all the legal requirements under KPCS, the DRI is yet to take a decision on releasing the goods," vice-chairman, GJEPC, Sanjay Kothari said.
Senior DRI officers are not ready to reveal any details in the Rs 120 crore diamond seizure. "Investigations are still going on and we will definitely reach some conclusion in the next couple of days," a senior DRI officer said.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/120-cr-diamond-haul-GJEPC-urges-DRI-to-speed-up-probe/articleshow/11063310.cms
December 13th, 2011, 07:45 AM
SURAT: The diamond city is all set to glitter with the fifth consecutive gems and jewellery event 'Sparkle International-2011' organized by the Southern Gujarat Chamber of Commerce and Industry ( starting December 16.
The four-day gems and jewellery event, organized at the state's first pillar-less domed-shaped Surat International Exhibition and Convention Centre ( SIECC) at Sarsana, is likely to see participation from the leading diamond and jewellery companies from Surat, Mumbai, Jaipur, Ahmedabad, Rajkot, New Delhi and other parts of the country and Hong Kong, Japan and Thailand.
Official sources said about 125 exhibitors in the categories like loose polished diamonds, diamond and studded jewellery, gold and silver jewellery, coloured gems stone dealers and jewellers will participate in the event.
"This time around, the gems and jewellery event will see the participation of the leading jewellery firms from Japan, Hong Kong, Thailand. We have created a separate international pavilion where the visitors could have an opportunity to look at the jewellery trends going on in the world," SGCCI president Rohit Mehta said.
According to Mehta, the gems and jewellery event has been supported by the Surat diamond industry as well as the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC). Most of the leading diamond manufacturers in Surat and Mumbai are participating in the event.
The event will be inaugurated by chairman of National Small-Scale Industries Corporation (NSIC) H P Kumar. Also, consul general of Sri Lanka Uketa Samartunga and high commissioner of Rawanda in South Africa will remain present as chief guests.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Four-day-Sparkle-to-begin-in-Surat-from-Dec-16/articleshow/11085503.cms
December 14th, 2011, 09:52 AM
SURAT: As soon as the four-storey Devkrupa Chambers in Mahidharpura collapsed on Tuesday afternoon, its debris became a major crowd-puller. Reason: The building housed five diamond-polishing units and people were hopeful of laying their hands on something precious from the rubble and make some quick bucks.
A large number of onlookers, who had gathered at the spot since the building began tilting in the morning, made a mad scramble at the debris as soon as the structure collapsed, desperately searching for diamonds as well as other valuables like machines and lenses.
Kanaiya Mavani, who had a unit on the second floor of the building, said, "I had left diamonds worth nearly Rs 1 crore in the locker of my office. Besides diamonds, there were costly imported machines and equipment worth lakhs."
The unit owners usually take the diamonds with them while closing the office at night. But, all of them had left the offices in the afternoon on Monday to attend some function, according to sources. "There were diamonds worth Rs 50 lakh in my office," said Ramesh Prajapati, an employee of a unit located on the first floor. Police and fire-brigade men had a difficult time controlling the crowd that only swelled as the news of the collapse spread. Later, they managed to push them away to a safe distance so that the debris could be cleared.
"We had to struggle a lot to keep people away from the debris as a large number of them were trying to search for precious things beneath the debris," said Ishwar Patel, fire officer of Mahidharpura fire station. He added that the authorities are maintaining extra caution as a small portion of the building is precariously hanging and can fall anytime. "10 policemen and two fire rescue teams will be posted at the spot till the debris is removed and owners recover their valuables," said D GChaudhary, police inspector, Mahidharpura police station. There were no casualties in the incident.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Surat-building-falls-people-scramble-for-gems/articleshow/11101778.cms
December 15th, 2011, 07:34 PM
SURAT: Labour unrest is forcing the diamond and jewellery companies in Mumbai's SEEPZ Special Economic Zone (SEZ) to think of expansion and shift their focus to Surat. The SEEPZ Special Economic Zone (SEZ) houses over 113 jewellery manufacturing units and they have become the target of the trade unions for the past some time. In the latest incident, Classic Diamonds (India) Limited had to shut all its operations at SEEPZ due to labour issues. The company had filed a complaint against a trade union before the industrial court and was ordered to stop its operation from November 21 till December 8.
"If even a single worker has some probl-em he will seek assistance of trade unions there. However, the trade unions would instigate other labourers to stay away from work until their demands are not resolved. We had to shut our Mumbai operations till December 8," said a company spokesperson, who also looks after the jewellery manufacturing unit at Surat Special Economic Zone (SurSEZ) located at Sachin.
He said, "We have set up a unit in SurSEZ keeping in mind the labour issues here. Surat is located in labour friendly Gujarat. We have never experienced any labour problem in Surat." In the past six months, twelve-odd diamond jewellery units in SEEPZ had extended their operations out of Mumbai and set up units at Surat Special Economic Zone (SurSEZ). The main reasons behind this are labour issues, trade union harassment and cheap cost towards constructing a unit in SurSEZ.
Some of the leading jewellery units at SurSEZ are Gitanjali Export Corporation Limited, Kiran Jewellery, Gili India Limited, Sanghavi Export, Gitanjali Gems Limited, Goenka Diamond and Jewels Private Limited and Classic Diamonds (India) Limited.
"At least nine other big jewellery manufacturers in SEEPZ are likely to set up their units in SurSEZ in the next few months. The jewellery companies are expanding their operations out of Mumbai in Surat to deal with the ever increasing labour issues," said Ajay Sharma, deputy CEO, SurSEZ.
Sharma said, "We have a total of 112 diamond polishing and jewellery manufacturing units in SurSEZ. More than 70 units here are also have their presence in Mumbai's SEEPZ."
Interestingly, the export turnover of diamond and jewellery manufacturing units at SurSEZ is much higher compared to Mumbai's SEEPZ. While the jewellery manufacturing units in Mumbai's SEEPZ exported Rs.11,000 crore worth of diamond, gold and other jewellery in 2010-11, the diamond and jewellery units in SurSEZ exported Rs 26,000 crore worth of polished diamonds and jewellery.
Aagam Sanghavi, director of Sanghavi Exports, who owns Sanghavi Jewels Private Limited at Mumbai's SEEPZ, said, "We are Mumbai SEEPZ member since past 17 years. This is the reason we do not want to shift out of SEEPZ, despite facing labour issue every now and then. But, at the same time we have extended our operation out of Mumbai to SurSEZ by setting up a diamond polishing unit there."
An office-bearer of SEEPZ Gems and Jewellery Manufacturers' Association, Mumbai told TOI "By and large Mumbai is known for its labour problems and even the SEZs are not spared. The jewellery manufacturing units have no other option but to run their factories here. In fact, many have expanded to Surat, but they are not getting skilled labour that we have in Mumbai."
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Mumbais-loss-is-Surats-gain/articleshow/11123786.cms
December 20th, 2011, 08:54 AM
SURAT: The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) has released the consignment of Rs 120 crore worth of rough diamonds seized from a leading diamond company, Arjav Diamond India on November 30 after the firm and the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) proved the legality of the goods imported in India from Zimbabwe via Dubai.
The consignment imported from Zimbabwe belonged to the Surat Rough Diamond Sourcing India Limited (SRSDIL) and meant for distribution among the member diamantaires. It was kept in the city-based Arjav Diamond India, owned by Ashit Mehta, who is also the chairman of SRSDIL.
On November 30, the DRI officials had raided the premises of Arjav Diamond at AK Road and seized five lakh carats of rough diamonds of Zimbabwe origin valued at Rs 120 crore. The raids were conducted following a tip off that the rough diamond consignment was brought from Zimbabwe's controversial Marange diamond field via Dubai without following the KPCS requirements.
As the issue was relating to Indian diamond industry's image to the world at large, the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) verified all the details regarding the import of rough diamond seized by the DRI. The GJEPC also submitted the documents showing the legal entry of the stock in India and that the company's commitment in fulfilling the formalities under the Kimberley Process (KP) procedure.
"The council had assisted the DRI with facts and figures to investigate and come at conclusion. We commend DRI for its efforts in keeping illicit diamonds out of the Indian system" said Rajiv Jain, chairman, GJEPC.
"We are ever vigilant against the trade of illicit diamonds in India. Council was surprised to note this incident happened with the prominent companies, SRSDIL and Arjav Diamond," added Jain.
The company said in a statement, "We are happy that both our companies have come out clean in the whole issue. We are into the responsible trade and we will continue to do the due diligence with regards to maintenance of procedural formalities of KP and import-export regulations of the country."
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/DRI-releases-120-crore-roughs-seized-from-Surat-diamond-firm/articleshow/11171653.cms
December 20th, 2011, 07:38 PM
SURAT: The Surat district and sessions court on Monday reduced the jail term of the two Lebanese nationals arrested in the diamond smuggling case in 2008 by six months.
Following an appeal from the Lebanese nationals, additional sessions judge PA Waghela ordered reduction of the jail term of both the accused to 3.5 years but directed them to double up the fine amount at Rs.2 lakh each.
Lebanese nationals, Hussain Robbai and Yousuf Ossely, were arrested by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) from the Rampura area with an illegal consignment of blood diamonds worth Rs.3.85 crore. The duo had come all the way from Lebanon to deliver the blood diamond consignment to unidentified diamond merchants in the city.
Sources said the accused were languishing in the sub jail since their arrest in 2008. Few months ago, the chief judicial court had ordered four years jail term to each of the two accused and imposed a fine of Rs 1lakh each. However, the accused filed an appeal with the higher court to reduce the jail term.
The additional sessions judge has also ordered to hand over the seized consignment of blood diamond to the DRI so that they could be auctioned and money be deposited in the government coffers.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Lebanese-nationals-jail-term-reduced-by-six-months/articleshow/11183982.cms
December 22nd, 2011, 07:31 PM
SURAT: Diamantaires and jewellery manufacturers are eagerly waiting for the first major gems and jewellery trade event to be held in 2012 in Mumbai, considered an important indicator of how the diamond market will fare during the year.
The four-day India International Jewellery Show ( IIJS-Signature), organized by Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), from January 6, is India's top-of-the-line jewellery show showcasing the best jewellery collections by leading jewellery manufacturers in the country and abroad.
Official sources said about 409 leading jewellery companies from Surat, Mumbai, Jaipur, New Delhi, Bengaluru etc. and about 46 from countries like Israel, Belgium, Thailand and Turkey are participating in the show. Leading the pack of overseas participation is Israel, which has about 18 leading jewellery companies showcasing their jewellery brands at IIJS Signature.
The IIJS Signature will have overseas delegations from Bangladesh, Vietnam, Nepal, Uzbekistan, Dubai, Kuwait, Qatar, Pakistan, Russia and Turkey.
Sanjay Kothari, vice-chairman, GJEPC said, "IIJS Signature is the first gems and jewellery show in the world in 2012. It will be an indicator of how the diamond market will fare during the whole year. India's jewellery manufacturing strengths are now established as a reliable and competitive source which retailers and consumers the world over have come to appreciate."
India cuts and polishes 14 out of 15 diamonds set in jewellery worldwide. The total imports of rough diamonds in India last financial year was worth $11 billion and the export of cut and polished diamonds was valued at $28 billion. The April-November, 2011 exports of cut and polished diamonds stood at $16 billion with a growth of 0.13 per cent and the month to month export figures of diamonds showed a decline of 26 per cent in the month of November 2011.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/IIJS-jewellery-event-2012-keenly-awaited/articleshow/11209966.cms
December 23rd, 2011, 10:22 PM
SURAT: If diamantaires in the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat hope the diamond jewellery market in U.S and Europe to be fairly good in 2012; they need to give it a second thought. The commerce department in the country has predicted that the next two years in European Union and the US - hit by financial crisis - are going to be very difficult for the exporters.
At a function organized by the Assocham on Thursday, commerce secretary Rahul Khullar urged Indian exporters to diversify to new markets such as Africa and Latin America.
Khullar said the next two years in the U.S and E.U are going to be difficult for Indian exporters due to cutbacks in government expenditure, exchange rate fluctuations and financial sector problems. However, India is negotiating free trade agreements with E.U, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia and Thailand, which will help reduce tariff levels and provide access to new markets.
With US accounting for about 40 per cent of world jewellery market, the annual jewellery sales in 2011 is expected to touch $65 billion registering a 4 per cent increase, according to the newly released data from the US department of commerce. In 2010, the US jewellery sale was $63.4 billion.
It is predicted that the jewellery sales in Christmas season - starting from November 25 to December 25 - will increase to 7.1 per cent at $4.7 billion compared to same season in previous year.
As far as India's export performance to the US - India is the top exporter to the US in the world - from August to October - ahead of Christmas sales season - is concerned, polished diamonds and jewellery worth $2 billion have already been exported till October 2011 with the figures of November and December yet to be released by the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC).
In 2010-11, the export of cut and polished diamonds was valued at $28 billion out of the total export of $43 billion worth of gems and jewellery. April to November, 2011 export of cut and polished diamonds stood at $16 billion with a growth of only 0.13 per cent. The month to month export figures of diamonds showed a decline of 26 per cent in the month of November 2011.
Industry sources said the diamond industry has diversified its presence in Latin America, West Asia, Hong Kong, China, Japan, Turkey, Thailand, Bangaladesh, Sri Lanka, etc. But the US is still an important market as far as the diamond jewellery consumption is concerned.
"Indian diamond companies have diversified into important markets across the world. But, the US and EU are still important markets for us. As predicted by De Beers and world's other leading research and marketing companies, India and China are going to become the second biggest market for diamond jewellery consumption by 2020 after US," said Sanjay Kothari, vice-chairman, Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC).
A DTC sightholder said, "We have started realizing the impact of dwindling economy in the US. Earlier, the market for the costly big size diamonds was good in the US and now the consumers are turning to the purchase of jewellery studded with low-cost diamonds."
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Diamantaires-need-to-give-a-second-thought-on-US-EU/articleshow/11223450.cms
December 24th, 2011, 06:53 PM
SURAT: Diamond Trading Company (DTC), a rough diamond distribution arm of the world's leading diamond mining company De Beers, seems to have played a fair game with its Indian clients, who form a majority on the worldwide clients list, at the recent provisional qualification of 72 companies for the upcoming supplier of choice (SoC) contract period, which begins on March 31, 2012 and runs to March 30, 2015.
As per the list of companies that confirmed their qualification for SoC from across the world to Rapaport group, which operates a diamond pricing service having more than 10,000 clients worldwide, the total number of clients at DTC London sight remain same with five existing Indian clients from India and Antwerp being replaced by five new Indian clients.
Out of the total 66 companies in DTC London sight, 28 are Indian companies, including two Indian companies, based in Antwerp. A total of six Indian companies have qualified for the DTC supplies at Botswana, Namibia and South Africa.
Five leading Indian diamond companies, including C Mahendra Exports Limited, Antwerp-based Diarough N V, Sanghavi Exports International Private Limited, K P Sanghvi & Sons and Mahendra Bros Export Private Limited, have been dropped from the preferred list of DTC clients. Interestingly, C Mahendra Export Limited is the only Surat-based company that got listed on the NSE in January 2011.
After dropping the five leading Indian companies, the DTC did a balancing act by selecting five new Indian companies namely Dianco BVBA, Gitanjali Gems Limited, Hari Krishna Exports, S Vinodkumar Diamonds Private Limited and Shree Ramkrishna Export. Three Indian companies -- Blue Star, Ankit Gems Namibia Private Limited and K G K Star Rough Private Limited -- have been selected by DTC for the first time at its Botswana, Namibia and South Africa sights respectively.
Industry sources said that out of the total 72 DTC sightholder companies worldwide, 34 Indian companies have qualified for DTC's supplier contract for 2012-2015.
"We expect the supply of rough diamonds to the 66 DTC clients in London sight to decrease as the DTC has increased its clients in Botswana from 16 to 21. But the overall strategy of DTC authorities was quite good as far as Indian companies are concerned," a DTC sightholder who has qualified for the contract period of 2012-2015 said.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/DTC-plays-fair-with-Indian-diamond-firms/articleshow/11235429.cms
December 31st, 2011, 09:04 AM
SURAT: The two year-long wait for the family members of the diamond merchants incarcerated in China may end soon with the court likely to order the deportation of 12 out of the 13 diamond merchants acquitted in the diamond smuggling case on January 5, 2012.
The family members of 13 diamond merchants - released by the Chinese court in the $ 7.3 million diamond smuggling case on December 7 - have been eagerly waiting for their safe return since that fateful day of January 8, 2010 when the Shenzhen customs had detained them along with nine other diamond merchants on charges of smuggling diamonds.
While 12 diamond merchants will be able to arrive home in January, the 13th one will have to spend another two-and-a-half-months in the Chinese jail due to some legal tangle.
"An appeal has been filed against one of the 13 diamond merchants in the Chinese court against the verdict. However, it will take another two to three months for the court to dispose of the appeal and deport the diamond merchant to India. The rest 12 diamond merchants are likely to be deported from China on January 5," said Dinesh Navadia, president, Surat Diamond Association (SDA).
Navadia said the diamond merchants released by the Chinese court were expected to arrive on December 30. But the legal procedure regarding the deportation of the 12 diamond merchants was delayed following the administrative procedures in China.
Vijay Sheth, leader of the Hong Kong diamond industry, told TOI, "The Indian embassy in China is in constant touch with the Chinese authorities for the deportation of 13 diamond merchants released by the Chinese court. One of the diamond merchant is facing an appeal in the higher court and that the 12 diamond merchants will reach Surat latest by January 6."
Sheth said that the family members of all the 13 diamond merchants are camping in Shenzhen from the past many days to secure the release of their men. They (family members) and the leaders of the diamond trade in China and Hong Kong and the officials of Indian embassy are coordinating with the Chinese authorities to complete the deportation procedure at the earliest.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/12-diamantaires-to-arrive-home-from-China-on-Jan-6/articleshow/11308040.cms
January 6th, 2012, 08:48 AM
MUMBAI: Twelve Indian diamond merchants, who were released after their arrest in China for alleged smuggling two years ago, returned home early Friday, official sources said.
They arrived around 2 a.m. and were greeted with hugs by anxious relatives and friends at the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport.
Away from their near and dear ones for the past two years, these 12 are amongst the 22 who had been arrested by the Chinese customs at Shenzen in January 2010 for allegedly smuggling diamonds from Hongkong to China.
While nine were found guilty of the charges and convicted to serve jail terms by a Chinese court, the remaining 13 were released.
The Chinese authorities have appealed against one of the 13 but it would take a few months for the appeal to be disposed of.
The remaining 12 were released and allowed to travel to India Thursday.
Soon after arrival, relatives of some of the diamond merchants got into arguments and indulged in minor fisticuffs with some mediapersons who had also assembled there.
Later, the diamond merchants went to their respective homes, a few in Mumbai and the rest for Surat, the diamond hub in south Gujarat.
Representatives of the Surat Diamond Merchants Association which had taken up their cause with the state and central governments were also present to receive their colleagues.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/12-diamond-merchants-home-after-two-years-in-Chinese-custody/articleshow/11386093.cms
January 6th, 2012, 09:14 PM
SURAT: Much to the displeasure of giant diamond mining companies like De Beers, Alrosa and Rio Tinto in 2012, diamond prices in the markets in Mumbai and Surat have seen an average of 25% decline since November-2011. Reason: Zimbabwe has started selling its high quality diamonds in India with the Central government clearing the trade in diamonds with this African nation in December-2011 after the Kimberley Process (KP) lifting an export ban.
The rough diamond market had reached a saturation point until July-2011 with the double-digit price increases by major rough diamond suppliers. While De Beers increased prices by about 10%, Alrosa prices were up by 20-25% followed by other players like BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto increasing rough diamond prices by 10-12%.
Interestingly, the price rise by the giant diamond mining companies came at the time when the rough diamond production declined by about 3.7% in the first half of 2011 compared to the first half of 2010. The largest producers - Alrosa, De Beers, Rio Tinto, BHP Billiton and Harry Winston - mined nearly 44.4 million carats in the period, compared to 46 million carats the year before.
Industry analysts said the price difference is primarily the result of the stockpiling of some lower-priced diamond assortments which currently face competition from the recent sale of stocks of similar quality Zimbabwe diamonds.
"The rough diamond prices in the open market in India have decreased by almost 25-30%. This is purely attributed to the flooding of Zimbabwe diamonds in the Indian market," said Ashit Mehta, chairman of Surat Rough Diamond Sourcing India Limited (SRSDIL).
Mehta said, "At a time when the global diamond production is declining, Zimbabwe has a huge diamond reserve to cater the Indian market, which polishes nine out of 10 diamonds."
According to the Diamond Industry report-2011, Zimbabwe's diamond output would continue to grow. In the last three years, Zimbabwe has become a significant diamond producer and is forecast to become a top-three producer by the end of this decade.
Currently, Zimbabwe has got four diamond mining firms operating in the Chiadzwa fields namely Marange Resources, Mbada Diamonds, Anjin and Diamond Mining Corporation. The country stands to earn more than 2 billion US dollars per year from the three Marange mines that have been permitted to sell so far.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Price-of-roughs-falls-by-25-as-Zimbabwe-diamonds-flow-in/articleshow/11367481.cms
January 8th, 2012, 08:33 AM
SURAT: Family members and relatives of the 12 diamond merchants freed by China are celebrating their homecoming after two years. However, the wait is getting longer for the near and dear ones of nine diamond merchants still serving additional jail term in China for the period ranging from one year to six years for smuggling diamonds worth 50 million Yuan ($ 7.3 million).
Thirteen diamond merchants of the 22 held on January 8, 2010 were freed by a Chinese court on December 7 and nine were given additional jail term ranging between one year and six years on being found guilty. One of the traders, who has been freed, is held up because of procedural problems and he will be heading for home in the next few months.
When the family members of the 12 diamond merchants were celebrating on Friday, the local court in south China's Shenzhen city ordered the transfer of eight diamond merchants serving additional jail term to the district jail in Shilong, located some 78-kilometre away from Shenzhen city. One diamond merchant serving six years jail term is being kept in Shenzhen jail as he is facing a legal appeal in the local court.
"We have heard a lot about Shilong jail where the inmates are released early depending on their good conduct in the jail. Now, we pray that our men are freed early so that we could celebrate their homecoming like them (members of the 12 diamond merchants)," said one of the relatives of Amit Soni, who is serving five years' term.
Some of the relatives and family members of the nine diamond merchants jailed in China had gone to Mumbai on Friday to meet the diamond merchants.
"We were there to feel the presence of our men. They (12 diamond merchants) were with my brother and other eight merchants for the last two years and I wanted to know how they were doing," a cousin of one of the nine diamond merchants jailed in China said.
The maximum punishment of six years in jail was awarded to a merchant Rajesh Kumar Jain. Two other detainees -- Soni Amitkumar and Bavishi Rajukumar Babubhai -- have been sentenced to five years in prison. The court had ordered three years' imprisonment for six other detainees. The period of one-year 11 months spent in detention before the judgment will be adjusted against their terms.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Wait-gets-longer-for-relatives-of-diamond-traders-in-China/articleshow/11405620.cms
January 12th, 2012, 10:26 PM
SURAT: Noose is tightening around some leading diamantaires of the city for financing land deals worth crores that led to the brutal daylight murder of land broker Amit Kapasiyawala on December 29.
Police have questioned two businessmen engaged in the diamond business who have invested in the disputed land.
Investigation so far has revealed that the city-based ayurvedic doctor Ashok Panchani and Vinu Kathrotiya masterminded the land grabbing of two plots, which belonged to Kapasiyawala family. The land was sold to some leading diamantaires who invested around Rs 30 crore. After few months when the diamantaires could not get possession of the land, they started pressurizing Panchani and others to get hold of the land.
With pressure mounting, Panchani and his associates planned to grab the land using fake documents and impersonation. The accused impersonated Pravin and Amit Kapasiyawala at the registrar office and got the land deal papers prepared. Later they attempted to take possession of the land without informing the actual owner Kapasiyawala by bribing the security guards at the land.
On Wednesday, police started questioning the investors about their interest in the land deal. Police are also trying to find out that on whose instruction the land grabbing was planned.
Police investigation also revealed that how the contract killer in Bhavnagar was hired. Bhavsinh Rajput, an aid of Panchani was asked to find a "suitable" person for the killing. After this, Rajput contacted Dharmendra alias Dhamo Baraiya in Bhavnagar and the contract money was sent through a local angadia firm.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Leading-diamond-firms-face-questioning/articleshow/11466475.cms
January 18th, 2012, 09:04 AM
SURAT: In what is seen as a move to check the round-tripping or repeated export and import of same diamonds prevalent in the Indian diamond industry, the union finance ministry has imposed a two per cent duty on the import of cut and polished diamonds in the country.
Sources said that the then finance minister P Chidambaram had scrapped the three per cent import duty on cut and polished diamonds in the 2007-08 budget, opening up the world market for the Indian diamond industry.
But, the recent developments in the industry related to the bank frauds running into Rs.2,500 by some of the leading diamond companies involved in the round-tripping of the polished diamonds is said to have forced the Central government to keep the imports under the scanner of the customs department.
The diamond traders, in the past have risked the bank loans, in a scheme of round-tripping, to cover losses and possibly carry out speculative deals. The practice uses cheap finance to cover repeated export of the same diamonds imported from their overseas firms, while funds shore up the balance sheet and appear to list increased turnover.
"The government seems to have woken up very late. There was rampant round-tripping of polished diamonds going on in the industry from the last couple of years since the day the three per cent import duty was scrapped in 2008," said a DTC sightholder.
As per the statistics of the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), India exported $28 billion worth of polished diamonds in 2010-11 and imported $20 billion worth of polished diamonds against the import of $11 billion worth of rough stones.
"I think the Central Government has taken a wise decision by imposing two per cent import duty on the polished diamond. The country will earn foreign exchange by charging import duty on the polished diamonds," said Sanjay Kothari, vice-chairman of GJEPC.
January 21st, 2012, 07:18 AM
SURAT: Surat Rough Diamond Sourcing India Limited (SRDSIL ), a diamond consortium formed by diamantaires to directly source rough diamonds from across the world, will hold its first ever online rough diamond auction on Saturday.
SRDSIL, set up in August 2010, will offer about 57,000 carats of rough diamonds in the size ranging from 50 cent to 20 carats worth over Rs 100 crore. Over 150 diamond firms based in Surat, Mumbai, Belgium, Israel and other locations will take part in the auction.
Aagam Sanghavi, spokesperson of SRDSIL and director of the leading diamond company, Sanghavi Export, told TOI "SRDSIL is ready for its first commercial venture with the online auction of over $19 million (Rs 100 crore) worth of rough stones on Saturday. The rough stones have been sourced from diamond mines located in Zimbabwe, Canada, South Africa, Australia, Botswana etc."
All diamond firms in the country and abroad are eligible to take part in the auction. The stock was kept for viewing from January 12 to January 17 and over 150 firms from India and abroad saw it. Sources said there are a total of 38 lots to be auctioned online. Over 150 firms have registered on srdsilauction.com and they will be able to bid online from anywhere in the world.
Sanghavi said, "After the success of the first online auction, we plan to organize another one within a fortnight."
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Roughs-worth-Rs-100cr-to-be-sold-online/articleshow/11573241.cms
January 22nd, 2012, 06:23 AM
SURAT: Small and medium diamond manufacturers opposed the online auction of Rs 100 crore worth of rough diamonds organized by Surat Rough Diamond Sourcing India Limited (SRDSIL) on Saturday.
Over 150 big diamond firms based in Surat, Mumbai, Israel, Belgium and other locations took part in the auction to buy 57,000 carats of rough diamonds ranging from 50 cent in size to 20 carats.
About $10 million worth of big sized stones were sold to various bidders in the first session that ended on Saturday afternoon. SRDSIL office-bearers said they are hopeful of selling all the $19 million worth of rough goods in the auction.
The diamantaires argued that the consortium was formed in August 2010 with the objective of sourcing rough diamonds directly from the mining countries and sell them to small and medium diamond manufacturers back home through tender and auction system at competitive rates to lessen the role of middle-man in the diamond markets in Mumbai and Antwerp, who charged hefty premium.
The consortium - led by leading diamond companies like Blue Star and Sanghavi Exports - seems to have strayed from the objective as only big diamond firms from India and abroad were invited in the online auction, the diamantaires said.
A senior office-bearer of Surat Diamond Association (SDA) and a leader of small and medium diamond firms in the diamond hub of Varachha and Katargam Chandu Sheta said, "With this online auction, the SRDSIL directors have proved that the consortium is and for the big diamond companies. The consortium has strayed away from the objective of procuring cheap stones for the small and medium firms."
A small diamond manufacturer in Mahidharpura Naresh Gabani, who was eagerly waiting for SRDSIL auction since 2010, said, "We strongly oppose the online auction by SRDSIL. At least half of the goods should have been reserved for the small and medium firms."
Spokesperson for SRDSIL Aagam Sanghavi said, "The auction was open for all, be it small, big or medium diamond firm."
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Small-diamantaires-unhappy-with-SRDSILs-online-auction/articleshow/11583999.cms
January 24th, 2012, 08:13 AM
SURAT: Surat Rough Diamond Sourcing India Limited's (SRDSIL) first online auction of rough diamonds was a huge success, with the consortium selling Rs 86 crore worth of goods to the bidders from the industry, especially from Surat and Mumbai last Saturday.
About 57,000 carats of big sized stones valued at Rs 93 crore, ranging from 50 cents to 20 carats - the stones were sourced mainly from Zimbabwe and Russia - were put up for online auction by the diamond consortium. Of this, the consortium claimed to have sold 46,500 carats of rough diamonds.
Chandrakant Sanghavi, director, SRDSIL, said, "We have fetched 93 per cent in value and 82 per cent of the goods put up for online auction was sold off to the bidders, mainly from Surat and Mumbai. This success will open up new avenues for the diamond consortium in the coming days. Now, we plan to organize a similar auction with low range goods, which could be ideal for small and medium manufacturers."
The first ever online auction of rough stones by the diamond consortium had faced ire from small and medium diamond manufacturers in the city. They had alleged the consortium had strayed away from its primary objective of helping the small and medium firms to get direct access to rough stocks from mining countries.
"We have kept certain stock reserved for small and medium diamantaires. This will be put up for auction in the next few days," Sanghavi added.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/SRDSILs-first-diamond-auction-a-success/articleshow/11609923.cms
January 28th, 2012, 07:08 PM
SURAT: If diamonds are the rich girl's best friend, they are soon going to be a source of livelihood for hundreds of poor tribal women living in the far flung areas in the district.
Thanks to a joint initiative taken by the District Rural Development Agency (DRDA), Surat Diamond Association (SDA) and the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), the unskilled tribal women will be trained for perfection in the cutting and polishing of the precious stones, so that they could get decent employment opportunities in the Rs 80,000 crore worth of diamond industry. The DRDA, which is running women empowerment schemes and programmes in the rural areas of the district, has about 8,000 Self Help Groups (SHGs) consisting of more than 1 lakh women as its members from different villages. All these women will be given training for diamond cutting and polishing at the taluka and cluster level.
Official sources said the Indian Diamond Institute (IDI) has taken up the responsibility of training the tribal women in diamond cutting and polishing at the taluka and cluster level. After completing the training, the SDA and the GJEPC will urge diamantaires to open up small diamond cutting and polishing units identifying the talukas and clusters.
"Tribal women may not come to the city to work in the diamond units. However, we have asked the diamond industry leaders to set up diamond manufacturing units in the taluka and clusters to help the tribal women get direct access to their workplace," director, DRDA, A M Khatri said.
According to Khatri, there are more than 1 lakh women from the rural villagers who are members of 8,000 SHGs. However, if even 50 per cent of these women are trained in diamond cutting and polishing, then the diamond industry will get about 50,000 women diamond cutters.
The world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat employs about 5 lakh diamond cutters and polishers and the women diamond cutters constitute about 10 per cent of the total workforce.
"The industry is set to face a shortage of diamond workers in the near future as the youngsters are not willing to take up the job and the present workforce is on the verge of retirement. However, the industry has felt a strong need to train unskilled artisans from the rural areas to create more employment. We are ready to extend all the support required in training and giving employment to the tribal women at their doorstep," SDA president Dinesh Navadia said.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Tribal-women-to-be-trained-in-diamond-cutting-polishing/articleshow/11667143.cms
February 3rd, 2012, 08:20 AM
SURAT: Prices of rough diamonds by De Beers and Alrosa in January 2012 in the diamond city saw a decline between 6% and 10%, especially in the low range category because of competition from Zimbabwe stones. Also, the low range diamond boxes of these giant diamond mining companies are selling at discounted rates by up to 25% in Surat and Mumbai. Industry leaders say Zimbabwe diamonds are about 50% cheaper than those from other sources.
Zimbabwe diamonds started to flow into the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing hub in Surat from November 2011 after the international diamond regulatory body Kimberley Process (KP) allowed their exports from the controversial Marange fields. About 30% of the diamond pieces currently manufactured in Surat are Zimbabwe stones.
Aniruddha Lidbide, a diamond analyst, told TOI, "The giant mining companies seem to be under price and sale pressure since November 2011, when the Zimbabwe goods started to enter India. India is the biggest consumer of low-range goods and thus the prices are likely to decrease further in 2012."
De Beers, Alrosa, Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton account for 70% of the total production of rough diamonds in the world. In 2010, the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) estimated the world production of rough diamonds at 133 million carats. De Beers has a share of 26% by volume and 35% by value, Alrosa has 28% share by volume and 25% by value, Rio Tinto has 11% share by volume and 10% by value and BHP Billiton has a 2% share by volume.
The Rs 80,000 crore worth diamond industry in Surat has always been a world leader in processing low range diamonds below one carat. In 2010-11, India imported rough diamonds worth $11 billion, out of which more than 50% were of low-range quality. Gems and jewellery exports for 2010-11 jumped 47% to $43 billion from $29.4 billion in the previous year.
As per the diamond industry report 2011, Zimbabwe's diamond output would continue to grow. It has a stock pile of 4.5 million carats of diamonds valued at $4-5 billion. Currently, Zimbabwe has four diamond mining firms operating in Chiadzwa fields - Marange Resources, Mbada Diamonds, Anjin and Diamond Mining Corporation. The country stands to earn more than US $2 billion per year from three Marange mines that have been permitted to sell so far.
Sanjay Kothari, V-C of Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC, told TOI, "The quality of Zimbabwe diamonds is different from those offered by DTC, Alrosa and even Rio Tinto. It is true that Indians have been benefited by Zimbabwe goods, but this will not trigger any reduction in the rough prices in the long run."
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/De-Beers-Rio-Tinto-feel-heat-of-Zimbabwe-roughs/articleshow/11735225.cms
February 4th, 2012, 09:33 AM
SURAT: After the success of its first ever online rough diamond auction in the diamond city, Surat Rough Diamond Sourcing India Limited (SRDSIL) is all set to organize second one in the next few days.
The first auction had high quality rough diamonds ranging from 50 cents to 20 carats worth Rs 100 crore. This time around, the diamond consortium is planning to put up for auction about two lakh carats of low range stones for small and medium diamantaires.
Aagam Sanghavi, spokesperson, SRDSIL, told TOI "The auction will have about three lakh carats of low range goods for small and medium diamantiares. Interested parties in Surat and Mumbai will be able to view the stock from February 9. The bids will be accepted by February 11."
Small and medium diamantaires were unhappy with SRDSIL office-bearers for not inviting them in the first online auction of rough stones. But, the diamond consortium defended the claim by stating that the first auction was of high quality stones and that they are organizing a second auction of low range quality stones only for small and medium diamantaires.
Sanghavi described the first online auction of rough diamonds a huge success, with the consortium selling Rs 86 crore worth of goods to the bidders from India and abroad.
About 57,000 carats of big sized stones valued at Rs 93 crore, ranging from 50 cents to 20 carats - the stones were sourced mainly from Zimbabwe and Russia - had been put up for online auction. Out of this, the consortium claimed to have sold 46,500 carats of rough diamonds fetching it Rs 86 crore.
Sanghavi said, "The low range goods are sourced primarily from Zimbabwe and other mining countries like Russia and African countries."
February 5th, 2012, 08:55 AM
SURAT: Backed by high demand from the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat, Zimbabwe is all set influence price and demand for rough diamonds in 2012. The market is currently ruled by the giant mining companies like De Beers, Alrosa and Rio Tinto.
Having received export approval from the Kimberley Process (KP) in November-2011, about 11 million carats of Marange goods from Zimbabwe are expected to enter the market in 2012, especially in India where the stones are largely manufactured in Surat.
Industry experts said Zimbabwe diamonds are expected to flow in the market in huge volumes throughout the year. This would further put an end to the price wars and the supply shortage experienced by Surat diamantaires post-recession.
Sources close to Marange operations in Zimbabwe told TOI that four mining firms operate in Marange, namely Diamond Mining Company (DMC), Chinese company Anjin, Mbada and Marange Resources. These four concessions are expected to reach about 20 million carats this year, up from about 9 million carats in 2011.
"Zimbabwe is set to rule the global rough diamond supply market in the next few years. Right now, the country is offering its average goods at $40 per carat, which is very cheap compared to other mining countries, whose diamonds are sold above $100 per carat. Already, Indian cutters are aware that the Marange goods offer them best margins in the market," a diamond analyst Anirudh Lidbide said.
According to the official statistics from Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS), the global diamond production fell by about four per cent to approximately 122 million carats in 2011 and the value of production rose to around 25 per cent to an estimated $14 billion. The rough diamond production remains significantly below the peaks of 2005 and 2006 when some 176 million carats of rough stones - Zimbabwe's production was not counted as the country was banned under KP.
For the first time after the KP's approval, diamonds from Zimbabwe's controversial Marange area are being tendered in the capital Harare this week. The DMC is holding a tender offering an estimated 4 lakh carats of rough stones and the Chinese owned mine Anjin is tendering some 5 lakh carats. The tendering process is most likely to be participated by the rough dealers and merchants from India and Israel.
Also, two other diamond mining firms - Mbada and Marange Resources - are auctioning about 7 lakh carats of rough stones in the next few days. However, a total of 1.6 million carats of rough stones will enter into the global supply chain.
"An excess supply of raw material in the market is set to increase the employment opportunities for the diamond workers here. Moreover, the rough inventories is likely to rise and that it will soften the prices, which was a double digit increase in 2011," chairman, Sanghavi Export, Chandrakant Sanghavi said.
Source - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Zimbabwe-to-shine-out-in-rough-diamond-market/articleshow/11758374.cms
February 12th, 2012, 08:14 PM
SURAT: After the success of the first online rough diamond auction, the second auction organized by the Surat Rough Diamond Sourcing India Limited (SRDSIL), especially for small and medium diamantaires received a lukewarm response on Saturday.
Industry sources said the flow of low-range Zimbabwe diamonds in the local markets in Mumbai and Surat could be one of the strong reasons behind the tepid interest shown by small and medium diamantaires.
The diamond consortium had kept about 3 lakh carats of low range goods - sourced from various countries like Russia, South Africa, Zimbabwe etc - valued at over Rs 30 crore for tender auction on Saturday.
The tender bids were invited from the local diamond manufacturers and rough dealers in Surat and Mumbai. Contrary to the high expectations by the SRSDIL office-bearers, the diamond consortium sold only 1.5 lakh carat of goods valued at Rs 15 crore.
"We have been able to sell about 51 per cent of the goods to the small and medium diamantaires and rough dealers. Out of the 31 diamond lots, 21 were sold out generating Rs.15 crore for the diamond consortium," said Aagam Sanghavi, spokesperson of SRDSIL.
Recently, the rough diamond sales by the world's leading diamond mining companies like De Beers and Alrosa in January-2012 saw a decline 6-10 per cent decline in the prices, especially in the low range category due to stiff competition from the Zimbabwe stones.
The Rs 80,000 crore worth of diamond industry in Surat is traditionally a world leader in cutting and polishing small sized low-range good.
In 2010-11, India imported rough diamonds worth $11 billion, out of which more than 50 per cent were of the low range quality.
If the industry leaders are to be believed the Zimbabwe diamonds are 40-50 per cent cheaper than the diamonds from other sources. Since Surat is the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre, Zimbabwe diamonds have become diamantaire's best friend.
Currently, Zimbabwe has got four diamond mining firms operating in the Chiadzwa fields namely Marange Resources, Mbada Diamonds, Anjin and Diamond Mining Corporation. The country stands to earn more than $ 2 billion US dollars per year from the three Marange mines that have been permitted to sell so far.
These low range Zim goods are in high demand in Northern and Southern Indian cities like Delhi, Punjab, Chandigarh, Chennai, Kolkata and other cities and foreign countries like the Middle East, China, Hong Kong, Iran and Armenia.
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Lukewarm-response-to-SRDSILs-2nd-online-auction/articleshow/11863887.cms
February 17th, 2012, 02:48 PM
Surat under threat from the Chinese dragon
Is the Rs 80,000 crore worth of diamond manufacturing industry in the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat under threat from the Chinese dragon? With a huge flow of capital investment from the diamond companies in Israel and Belgium in and around Shanghai and the provinces of Guangdong and Shandong, Chinese threat is more eminent than ever before.
If the latest figures from the Shanghai Diamond Exchange (SDE) and the Diamond Administration of China (DAC) are any indication, then the diamond cutting and polishing in China has increased from a mere $600 million in 2007 to $2 billion in 2011. Also, the strength of skilled diamond workers has increased from 7,000 in 2007 to more than 60,000 in 2011.
But, Surat faces stiff challenges. The local industry that employs about 5 lakh workers is facing shortage of skilled manpower.
"Surat is finding it hard to find labour. Salaries in other industries are rising faster than in the diamond industry and they are having a hard time employing new generation of diamond polishers. If this labour problem continues, China could be a real threat to us," said Dinesh Navadia, president, Surat Diamond Association (SDA).
"There are two main advantages to operating a processing factory in China, as opposed to anywhere else," said Nick Weinstock, a Belgian national who has set up a diamond processing unit in Panyu's Shawan jewellery industrial park. "The first is labour costs. The second is that the local government is very supportive, and has introduced a raft of measures to encourage investment."
Vijay Sheth, a diamond trader in Hong Kong, who is setting up a factory in Guangdong, said, "Unlike many diamond companies in Belgium and Israel, Indian companies are also setting up their manufacturing facilities in China because the government offers more tax perks than India."
If one were to compare the labour costs in the diamond processing sector in the world, China is almost at par with India. The cost per carat for cutting and polishing diamonds is just $17 per carat in China compared to $13 per carat in India, $150 in Belgium and $100 in Israel. China, the world's second largest processor of small diamonds after India, now imports around $1 billion worth of rough diamonds every year.
- principally from Antwerp, Israel and Africa. The country's share of the global diamond processing industry is expected to increase to over 21% by 2012, while the market leader India's slice is predicted to drop from 57% to 49%, according to a report by KPMG India.
According to reports, diamond trade in China through the SDE rose 63% to $4.71 billion in 2011 compared to previous year and the diamond imports rose 56% to $2 billion.
Sanjay Kothari, vice-chairman, Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) said, "Coming five years are very crucial for the diamond manufacturing sector in India, especially in Surat. Chinese diamond industry is growing at a much faster pace and thus we have strongly represented the Central government to introduce presumptive taxation system - prevailing in Belgium, Israel and China."
February 21st, 2012, 07:12 AM
SURAT/AHMEDABAD: With imports of low-range rough diamonds from Zimbabwe expected to soar, it's going to rain jobs in Surat, the world's largest cutting and polishing centre, this year.
According to industry estimates, at least 60,000 workers will be required in Surat as this is the only centre in India to specialize in cutting and polishing rough diamonds from the African country's Marange mines. The impact will also be felt in cutting centres of Ahmedabad which often get the spillover from Surat.
Dinesh Navadia, president of Surat Diamond Association (SDA) said, "The small cutting centres like Ahmedabad, Bhavnagar and Amreli will also get the benefit of increase in employment due to the flow of Zimbabwe diamonds. Many units outsource cutting and polishing work to these small centres as well. At present, 4 lakh workers are employed in Surat's nearly 3,500 cutting and polishing units. The industry is expected to import $1.5 billion worth roughs from Zimbabwe this year.
After laying off thousands during the global meltdown in 2008, most of the big, small and medium diamond manufacturers in the city are head-hunting for fresh and skilled talent from Saurashtra region. Many are even offering incentives like referral awards to those workers who help bring in new talent while the wages have also gone up by at least 10 per cent.
"I need at least 50 more workers and have started searching for skilled polishers from my native Gadhada in Bhavnagar district. My inventory of roughs has increased due to high demand of low-range polished goods in the retail markets of India, China, Hong Kong and the Middle-East," said Harshad Vekaria, who owns a diamond manufacturing unit in Varachha employing 150 polishers.
"We believe that the flow of Zimbabwe diamonds will create over 60,000 jobs in the Surat industry. Zimbabwe diamonds are cheaper than those from other mining countries and manufacturers in Surat have a win-win situation," said Sanjay Kothari, vice chairman of Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC).
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/ahmedabad/Zimbabwe-roughs-to-spur-jobs-in-Surat/articleshow/11971048.cms
February 22nd, 2012, 06:21 AM
SURAT: It seems the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat has started reaping the benefits of the much-needed air connectivity with Mumbai.
For the first time, who's who of Russian diamond industry are expected to descend on the diamond city to develop new sourcing relationships with leading diamond companies at the three-day Indo-Russia buyers sellers meet (BSM) being organized by Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) in April.
Official sources said about 20 Russian wholesalers and jewellery manufacturers will fly down to the diamond city and meet 15 select diamond manufacturers to understand Indian diamond manufacturing, supply chain, business practices and culture. The companies would mutually identify and develop new sourcing opportunities and substantially increase direct diamond export.
Sanjay Kothari, vice-chairman, GJEPC, told TOI, "The Indo-Russian BSM is part of our endeavor to promote Indian exports to emerging markets. Since the city has got air connectivity with Mumbai, Russian companies have an opportunity to establish new sourcing relationship and understand the strength and capabilities of Surat in manufacturing world-class diamonds."
Russia accounts for nearly 25 per cent of the world's total rough diamond production and also shares about 25 per cent in terms of value. Russian diamond market earned a revenue of $4.75 billion in 2010 and it is estimated to reach $5.75 billion in 2015.
Chandrakant Sanghavi, chairman of Sanghavi Export, said, "It is vital for Indian diamond industry to develop new markets so as to ensure that it is less dependent on the US. I am all for any new markets - in Russia as well as Turkey and China."
Sanghavi said, "If we look at Dubai, about half of all high-end domestic diamond jewellery sales are to Russian tourists. This clearly indicates that there is a considerable appetite among Russians for diamond jewellery."
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Russian-jewellery-companies-to-visit-Surat/articleshow/11982088.cms
February 25th, 2012, 06:40 AM
SURAT: If the United States (US) and its diamond traders revisit their decision to ban the rough diamonds from Zimbabwe's Marange mines, then the Indian diamond industry could create tens of thousands of new jobs for the diamond workers, believe officials of Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), an apex body of the gems and jewellery sector in the country.
"Zimbabwe has the right to legally sell its rough diamonds in the world market after getting clearance from Kimberley Process. But, most of the big diamond companies in India do not want to expose their links with Zimbabwe because they are wary of US sanctions and its trade groups. However, we want to strongly urge the Central government to take up the issue with its US counterparts," said Sanjay Kothari, vice-chairman, GJEPC.
"India has the potential to create more employment in the diamond and jewellery manufacturing centre, provided the US lifts its ban on Zimbabwe diamonds," added Kothari.
Industry experts said the demand for low cost diamonds from Zimbabwe is increasing from within the country and other markets like West Asia, China, Hong Kong, etc. Since US controls the world's 40 per cent of the diamond jewellery market and most of the jewellery consumers wear low-cost diamond jewellery, Zimbabwe diamonds polished in India could very well penetrate the US market.
Sources said US had effectively banned diamonds from Marange by adding two mining companies operating in Zimbabwe namely Marange Resources and Mbada Diamonds onto its sanction list in December 2011. Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation (ZMDC) was already on its sanction list.
Following United States sanctions on Zimbabwe, the US-based Rapaport group, which has more than 10,000 diamond traders across the world as its trading members, banned Zimbabwe diamonds, saying that companies continuing to trade in diamonds from Marange filed would be expelled from the trade group.
Chandrakant Sanghavi, regional chairman, GJEPC told TOI, "Zimbabwe diamonds are banned in US and Europe, which constitute around 45 per cent of the world diamond jewellery market. If the US clears Zimbabwe diamonds, then Surat would need extra manpower to cater to the growing demand of these low-cost diamonds in the world."
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Zimbabwe-diamonds-US-urged-to-do-a-rethink-on-ban/articleshow/12023694.cms
February 27th, 2012, 02:05 PM
SURAT: International Gemological Institute (IGI), world's largest independent laboratory for testing and evaluating gemstones and fine jewellery based in Belgium, has announced a tie-up with International Institute of Fashion Technology's (IIFT) Surat centre to start a short-term professional course in diamond jewellery designing. Official sources said the demand for skilled professionals in the field of diamond jewellery manufacturing in the city is increasing and the tie-up with the international institute will go a long way in churning out expert jewellery designers needed for diamond jewellery manufacturing companies.
According to surveys, India and China will fuel the growth of diamond and gold jewellery in the next decade. Last year, the total demand for diamond-studded jewellery in India increased by 31 per cent and China registered a 25 per cent growth in the same category.
Anupam Goyal, head of IIFT Surat centre, said, "The jewellery designing programme is being started to encourage youngsters to shape their career in the fast emerging diamond jewellery industry in India. tnn
The expert trainers and faculties from IGI will impart training to students along with 100 per cent job assistance."
He said, "The youngsters have a fair chance of entering the jewellery manufacturing field by taking lessons from expert faculties from the international institute."
February 28th, 2012, 08:03 AM
SURAT: International Gemological Institute (IGI), world's largest independent laboratory for testing and evaluating gemstones and fine jewellery based in Belgium, has announced a tie-up with International Institute of Fashion Technology's (IIFT) Surat centre to start a short-term professional course in diamond jewellery designing. Official sources said the demand for skilled professionals in the field of diamond jewellery manufacturing in the city is increasing and the tie-up with the international institute will go a long way in churning out expert jewellery designers needed for diamond jewellery manufacturing companies.
According to surveys, India and China will fuel the growth of diamond and gold jewellery in the next decade. Last year, the total demand for diamond-studded jewellery in India increased by 31 per cent and China registered a 25 per cent growth in the same category.
Anupam Goyal, head of IIFT Surat centre, said, "The jewellery designing programme is being started to encourage youngsters to shape their career in the fast emerging diamond jewellery industry in India. tnn
The expert trainers and faculties from IGI will impart training to students along with 100 per cent job assistance."
He said, "The youngsters have a fair chance of entering the jewellery manufacturing field by taking lessons from expert faculties from the international institute."
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Surat-IIFT-ties-up-with-IGI/articleshow/12047656.cms
March 2nd, 2012, 06:56 AM
SURAT: The $43 billion Indian diamond industry heaved a sigh of relief as the ministry of commerce and industry has issued a notification giving 2% duty exemption on the re-import of cut and polished diamonds sent abroad for certification and grading purpose on February 28.
TOI had reported the issue on January 28 this year highlighting the plight of the diamond companies whose polished diamond consignments worth crores of rupees sent for certification and grading purpose were held by the custom authorities after the union government imposed 2% duty on the import of cut and polished diamonds on January 16.
A huge quantity of polished diamonds is sent for certification and grading purpose abroad at gemological institute such as Gemological Institute of America (GIA), International Gemological Institute (IGI), American Gem Society (AGS), Hoge Road Voor Diamond (HRD), Antwerp etc. by the diamond companies in the country.
As per the notification issued by the ministry of commerce and industry, a polished diamond exporter with an annual export turnover of Rs 5 crore for each of the last three years may export cut and polished diamonds abroad to any of the gemological agencies and laboratories with re-import facility at zero duty within three months from the date of export.
Sanjay Kothari, vice-chairman, Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) said, "It is a big relief for the industry. We appreciate the prompt decision taken by the ministry of commerce and industry in this direction. Now, the diamond companies can send their precious stone for certification and grading and import the parcels without paying duty."
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Duty-exemption-for-re-import-of-diamonds-certified-abroad/articleshow/12101259.cms
March 24th, 2012, 08:59 AM
SURAT: After Zimbabwe, diamantaires in the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat are eyeing Botswana for rough diamond imports. The government of Botswana had recently set up State Diamond Trading Company (SDTC) to auction an estimated $300 million worth of rough diamonds in the open market.
About 70% rough diamond supplies globally are controlled by world's leading mining companies like De Beers, Alrosa, Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton while the rest are sold through open tenders or auctions by the respective governments in African countries, Canada, Australia and Russia.
Diamantaires have been eyeing the 30% supplies in the global market available through open tenders and auctions. As per official statistics of Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council ( GJEPC), the import of rough diamonds in the country in February increased 21% to $1.33 billion compared to the same month in previous year. For the first two months of 2012 - January and February - the total rough diamond imports increased by 15% to $2.42 billion.
"While Zimbabwe is seen as a major rough diamond supplier with about $4 billion worth of annual diamond production to be sold in the open market, Botswana is the second country in focus for the diamantiares," said Dinesh Navadia, president, Surat Diamond Association (SDA).
The Botswana government's STDC will be responsible for purchasing, selling and marketing of that country's 10% run-of-mine production from Debswana mines, which produces rough diamonds worth $3 billion annually. Botswana is the world's largest source of precious stones, accounting for 21% of global diamond-mine production and about two-thirds of De Beers's output.
In September 2011, the government of Botswana and De Beers SA - each of which own 50% in Debswana mine - signed a 10-year agreement for sales, valuing and sorting of Debswana's diamond production. Under the agreement, De Beers will move its London-based rough diamond sales - Diamond Trading Company (DTC) - office to Botswana's capital Gaborone by the end of 2013. As part of the new 10-year sales pact, Botswana government will have the right to sell 10% of diamonds mined in the country through STDC.
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Diamantaires-now-eye-Botswana/articleshow/12387917.cms
March 25th, 2012, 08:57 AM
SURAT: Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), the apex body of the Indian diamond industry, has expressed satisfaction over decline of about 80% in the polished diamond imports in February following the levy of 2% import duty by the government.
GJEPC authorities said the sharp fall in polished diamond imports in the country has resulted in curbing of round-tripping of diamonds - a series of exports and imports of the same goods for the purpose of receiving greater bank financing - through import duty levy.
"Taxing polished diamond imports has stopped round-tripping of diamonds leading to sharp decline in exports as well. India exported $1.44 billion worth of polished diamonds in February, a 53.7% drop compared to February 2011," said a top GJEPC functionary.
As per the import-export statistics released by GJEPC, the polished diamond imports sank 80% to just $476 million in February compared to the same month in the previous year.
The volume of exports in February 2012 declined by 69% to 1.4 million carats from the 4.5 million carats imported a year before.
Sources said government kept a close watch on the industry after GJEPC released its statistical report on the import of gems and jewellery in 2010-11, which showed huge import of polished diamonds worth $20 billion, an increase of 57% compared to previous year.
After a detailed analysis, government concluded that the import of polished diamonds rose significantly after 2008 as a result of the then Union finance minister P Chidambaram scrapping the 3% import duty.
After 2008, diamond traders risked the bank loans through round-tripping of diamonds. The practice was to use cheap finance to cover repeated exports of the same diamonds that had been imported. The funds helped shore up the balance sheet and show increased turnover.
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Polished-diamond-imports-fall-by-80/articleshow/12398747.cms
March 29th, 2012, 08:41 AM
SURAT: As the London-based Rio Tinto group has started scouting for buyers to take over its diamond business including the biggest Argyle mine in Australia, diamantaires in Surat are hoping the buyer should not be a Chinese dragon.
Reason: There is a surge in Chinese investment into Australia's resources sector and as China is emerging as the second biggest diamond cutting and polishing sector, India could lose control over the $1.5 billion worth of annual supply from the Argyle mine in the long term. Argyle exports about 85 per cent of its rough diamonds to Surat.
If the latest figures from the Shanghai Diamond Exchange (SDE) and the Diamond Administration of China (DAC) are any indication, the diamond cutting and polishing in China has increased from a mere $600 million in 2007 to $2 billion in 2011. Also, the strength of skilled diamond workers has increased from 7,000 in 2007 to more than 60,000 in 2011.
Rio Tinto mines the most diamonds, producing the majority at its Argyle mine in Western Australia, where 90 per cent of the world's pink and red diamonds are mined. At its prime, annual production at the mine reportedly fluctuated between 20 and 30 million carats, but in the past five years the production has tumbled from double to single digits, with fewer than nine million carats coming from the mine in 2010-2011.
"China is a biggest threat for us as far as the Rio's plan to sell off its diamond business in Australia and other countries like Canada and Zimbabwe is concerned. If a Chinese company takes over the Argyle mine, then it would control the rough supplies thereby affecting the market in Surat in the long term," said Ashit Mehta, chairman of Blue Star group.
Mehta said that China has invested in the diamond mines in Zimbabwe and now it is eyeing Australia, Canada and other African countries. China wants to become the biggest rough diamond trading hub.
According to a recent global study by Bain & Company, commissioned by the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC), the rough diamond demand in carats is likely to grow by more than six per cent per year through 2020 because of an expanding middle class in the two Asian countries - India and China. Rough diamond prices rose 24 per cent last year after two consecutive annual gains of 32 per cent as producers struggled to keep pace with the consumption.
India's annual rough diamond requirement is pegged at $10-$11 billion. In 2010-11, India imported $11 billion worth of rough stones.
Aagam Sanghavi, director of Sanghavi Exports said, "I think the buyer to whom Rio will sell its diamond assets would certainly put in efforts to increase the rough diamond production. If it is so, then Surat would gain as most of the Argyle production is exported to India. But the fear of Chinese investment will always be there for the diamantaires"
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Rio-Tintos-exit-from-diamond-business-has-Surat-traders-fingers-crossed/articleshow/12448906.cms
March 29th, 2012, 01:02 PM
I had a question about the Surat Diamond Industry that where does all the money go to which is made from the diamonds? Are the companies in Surat owned by foreign nationals or owned by Suratis? Since diamonds are so expensive and Surat is so heavily involved in the industry, I would expect the streets of Surat to be paved with diamonds. :)
Or do the people make very little money from diamond cutting/polishing?
Is the money made by the diamond industry spent in Surat?
I've always wondered about this.
April 3rd, 2012, 08:59 PM
SURAT: Once again, Indian diamantaires have proven their might in the global diamond world. This was evident in the latest new sightholders or client list published by the Diamond Trading Company (DTC), a rough diamond distribution arm of global diamond giant, De Beers group, for the contract period 2012-2015, on Monday. Around 33 out of the total 75 clients - supplier of choice (SoC) - selected worldwide are Indian companies.
The DTC, which has average annual rough diamond sales worth $5.5 billion, organises about 10 sales sight every year for its clients. The diamond boxes of various sizes and colours are displayed at the London headquarters of DTC and that the clients have to express their interest for the specific stock requirement.
As about 33 clients of DTC are Indians, about 50 per cent of the stock to be put up for sale throughout the year is expected to come to India - about $2.5 billion worth of goods. While the DTC sightholder companies would keep a certain amount of goods for processing and value addition, rest of the goods would be sold in the open market to the small and medium unit owners on premium price.
India is by far the largest diamond cutting centre and largest customer of rough diamonds, responsible for 72 per cent of the worldwide consumption - the annual rough diamond demand is pegged at $11 billion. China and Israel are distant second and third, respectively, with only 11 per cent and 7 per cent of global rough consumption, respectively.
The rush for rough diamonds in India has already started as the consumer demand for diamond jewellery is increasing from India, US and China in the backdrop of the dwindling rough diamond supplies.
Diamond miners in the world are struggling to keep pace with growing consumption in emerging economies as older mines are exhausted and producers lack new discoveries. Prices of rough, or unpolished, diamonds have risen as much as 50 percent from a six-year low in early 2009 as jewellery sales collapsed.
Rajiv Jain, chairman, GJEPC told TOI, "India is the world's biggest rough diamond consumer and the diamantaires are leaving no stone unturned to secure the rough diamond supplies from across the world, be it from Zimbabwe, Russia, Canada, Australia and African nations."
Industry sources said that most of the Indian diamond companies have been chosen in the new DTC list, few of the Surat-based companies like C Mahendra Export, Sanghavi Exports International Private Limited and K P Sanghavi & Son have been dropped for the contract period 2012-2015 due to one or other reasons.
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/DTCs-33-of-75-clients-are-Indian-companies/articleshow/12523727.cms
April 15th, 2012, 12:58 PM
Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council asks jewellers to end strike
SURAT: Following the assurance given by the finance minister for considering the demand of jewellers across the country, chairman of Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) has urged the jewellers to end their indefinite strike.
On Friday, finance minister Pranab Mukherjee had organized an urgent meeting with the jewellery trade associations, including the GJEPC and the All Indian Gems and Jewellery Trade Federation (GJF).
Chairman, GJEPC, Rajiv Jain, who was present in the meeting, said, "The FM has assured to consider the demand of the agitating jewellers and come out with suitable measures as per the industry's requirement with regards to imposition of excise on jewellery. The same will be done when the parliament re-assembles after recess for passing of the finance bill."
Jain added that the finance minister has also assured that the import duty imbalance for jewellery imported under the FTA from Thailand and other issues faced by the gems and jewellery exporters due to recent announcements in the budget will be looked into by the finance ministry.
April 20th, 2012, 02:37 PM
Antwerp to face stiff competition from Dubai as De Beers shifts key unit
SURAT: Antwerp, the world's largest diamond trading hub, is set to face stiff competition from Dubai following De Beers SA, the world's largest producer of rough diamonds, moving its key sales unit to Botswana from London.
Peter Meeus, chairman of Dubai Diamond Exchange (DDE), who was in the diamond city on a Dubai trade mission on Wednesday, said, "The shifting of De Beers' sales unit from London to Botswana will have a positive impact on the diamond trade through Dubai. In the recent past, we have seen a lot of new applications coming from diamond traders in India, Belgium, New York, etc, for setting up offices in Dubai Multi Commodity Centre Authority (DMCC)".
Dubai is among the top five global diamond trading centres after Antwerp, New York, Mumbai and Israel. With worldwide demand for diamonds set to grow by 6% a year to 2020, Dubai is vying for a piece of the world's diamond pie, competing against other global diamond hubs, such as Antwerp.
Dubai's location means it can serve as the gateway to parts of Africa and West Asia, and the Emirate is taking concrete steps to gain a foothold in the market. In 2004, it set up Dubai Diamond Exchange - a subsidiary of its central commodities authority, the DMCC. Since then it has seen a meteoric growth in diamond trade, with export and import of polished and rough diamonds totaling $35 billion in 2010.
Meeus said, "Dubai has become the destination of choice for diamond traders in India and Belgium due to its strategic location and tax-free business regime. In the last couple of years, DMCC boasts of over 700 diamond trading firms."
In the start of 2012, Antwerp World Diamond Council (AWDC) launched a 'strategic master plan-2020' to preserve and extend the dominance of Antwerp in the global diamond sector. AWDC, which represents some 1,850 trading companies based in the north Belgium port city, said it aimed to create new 4,000 jobs in the sector in Antwerp by 2020.
"The position of Antwerp as the world's largest diamond trading centre is going to remain strong for years to come. I do not want to comment on the number of companies that shifted from Antwerp to Dubai, but it is difficult for traders to shift overnight as they have their social and family set up there," said Meeus, who is also implementing a master plan for Dubai's diamond sector.
Rohit Mehta, president of Southern Gujarat Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SGCCI), who is also associated with Surat's diamond industry, said, "Dubai is a promising destination for diamond trading companies as it offers tax-free environment and is strategically located. It is a gateway to African countries including Botswana and thus many Indian companies are vying for space in Dubai."
May 4th, 2012, 02:32 PM
UAE beats US as top polished diamond export market for India
SURAT: The US is no longer the leading export destination of cut and polished diamonds manufactured in India, especially in world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat. The United Arab Emirate (UAE) has beaten the US to become the top export destination for cut and polished diamonds in the last five years.
Dubai, a key destination for polished diamond exports from India, is fast emerging as a significant diamond hub driven by demand from the growing Indian and Chinese middle class. Dubai's location means it can serve as the gateway to parts of Africa and West Asia.
The polished diamond trade between India and UAE was not so impressive a few years ago. The polished diamond trade picked up after 2004 after a few of the big diamond companies and traders from India set up their offices in the free zone of Dubai Multi Commodity Centre Authority (DMCC).
UAE was the third lowest export destination with only 9 per cent of the total export of cut and polished diamonds in 2006. In 2011, about 44 per cent of the cut and polished diamonds were exported to UAE followed by 25 per cent to Hong Kong and mere 12 per cent to US.
From a mere $1 billion worth of cut and polished diamond export in 2006, UAE has currently emerged as the top export destination with $12 billion worth of polished diamond export per annum.
Industry sources said the export growth is evident due to increasing retail growth in UAE in the past few years. About half of jewellery trade in Dubai now consists of diamonds, with many of Dubai's diamond jewellery sellers located in one central location - the Gold and Diamond Park. Some 90 retailers operate tax free in a secured location.
"About half of India's polished diamond trade is done through UAE, especially from Dubai. Almost all the big and medium diamond firms in India have set up their trading offices in Dubai's free zone from where they sell locally and in the international market," said a senior office-bearer of Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC).
"In 2010-11, a total of $28 billion worth of polished diamonds was exported from India. About $12 billion worth of diamonds were exported to Dubai," he added.
May 24th, 2012, 08:27 PM
SURAT: The glittering gems cut and polished in the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat are soon going to become the best friends of the Pakistani consumers.
For the first time, a high level delegation from the Indian gems and jewellery industry led by the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) will cross the Wagah border to participate in the Pakistan International Gems and Jewellery Exhibition, a four-day show organised by Pakistan Gems and Jewellery Development Company (PGJDC) in Karachi starting June 7.
A first of its kind, this initiative supported by Pakistani government aims to strengthen the trade ties between the two countries and leverage the huge potential of gems and jewellery trade.
A high level delegation consisting of eight leading diamantaires and exporters from Surat and Mumbai led GJEPC vice-chairman, Sanjay Kothari will be attending show in Karachi.
The delegation members have been given a special opportunity to discuss about bilateral trade in the export of polished diamonds, gold jewellery, diamond studded jewellery and the import of rough diamonds with about 300 representatives of Pakistan's gems and jewellery industry.
Kothari told TOI, "From years we were looking for an opportunity to establish direct trade links with our counterparts in Pakistan. The upcoming gems and jewellery event in Karachi will open up doors for the Indian exporters to Pakistan."
Industry sources said the direct export of cut and polished diamonds, gold and diamond studded jewelery to Pakistan is almost nil. However, the cut and polished diamonds and diamond-studded jewellery is exported to Pakistan via Dubai.
"Pakistan has allotted most favoured nation (MFN) status to India and thus our visit to Karachi is timely in exploring direct trade links with our counterparts there," said Kothari.
According to Kothari, the Indian gems and jewellery industry market is estimated to be worth $ 20 billion and Pakistan market is estimated to be around $ 10 billion. Moreover, the taste of Indian and Pakistani consumers in gems and jewellery is quite similar.
Also, Pakistan has a reserve of natural resources like rough diamonds, which could be further explored to satisfy the rough diamond needs of India.
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Diamonds-from-Surat-to-glitter-in-Pakistan/articleshow/13457139.cms
June 13th, 2012, 08:13 PM
SURAT: Diamantaires in the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat are hoping the polished diamonds prices to increase following the increase in the demand witnessed during the JCK Las Vegas show.
Industry sources said the price of smaller goods below 50 cent increased between 2-6 per cent and that the price in fancy cut diamonds below 1 carat witnessed a mixed trend of increase and decrease between 1-5 per cent.
The increase in the polished diamond prices is mainly due to the good response of the buyers, especially from the U.S, China and Dubai during the recently concluded JCK Las Vegas show. The demand for smaller goods in the U.S has picked, after witnessing less demand in the last one year.
"The flat price trend of round polished diamond in the past few months may finally be changing. While prices were stable though most of May, in the last few days of the month - and into June - prices started to edge up just before the Las Vegas shows started" said Aagam Sanghavi, director of Sanghavi Export.
Surat diamantaires are hoping the upcoming Hong Kong International Jewellery show in September would fuel the polished diamond prices further due to the increasing demand of diamond jewellery in China, Hong Kong, India and U.S.
On the other hand, the diamantaires are skeptical on the decrease in the polished diamond import by the U.S in May, which fell about 17 per cent to $ 1.43 billion.
"The consumers in U.S are shifting towards low cost diamonds in small sizes. Thus, the value of polished diamonds exported to U.S is decreasing as the Indian exporters are supplying low cost diamonds in small sizes. However, this is reflecting in the total import of polished diamonds by the U.S" said a DTC sightholder.
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Diamantaires-hope-polished-diamond-prices-to-rise/articleshow/14093971.cms
June 14th, 2012, 10:42 AM
SURAT: More than size, cut and glitter, Indian diamantaires dealing with their buyers in the US require a strong convincing power to prove that the cut and polished diamonds they sell are 'conflict-free'. It is because their US counterparts are skeptical that the diamonds supplied by Indian traders could have originated from the controversial Marange mine in Zimbabwe, which is marred by alleged human rights abuses and that it could destroy the confidence of American consumers.
"It takes guts to sell diamonds in the US. Specially, after the Kimberley Process's (KP) approval to Zimbabwe to export its diamonds from the Marange diamond field in November-2011 and the Indian traders bringing huge quantities of the rough diamonds for cutting and polishing in Surat factories," a polished diamond dealer based in Manhattan, New York, Harish Shah said.
"Even most of our old clients in New York ask us to give an undertaking and required documents to support the fact that diamonds they are buying are conflict free and that they have not originated from Zimbabwe," added Shah.
The strict scrutiny may force diamantaires to look for other markets, which many of them have already started. Many are seeing Dubai and Hong Kong as potential markets for their products.
Few months ago, the Jewellers of America (JA) advised its members - traders and jewellers in the US - to exercise appropriate due diligence and ask their suppliers - Indian diamantaires - provide additional written reassurances, beyond the World Diamond Council's (WDC) System of Warranties (SoW) statement, that the diamonds they supply have not originated from Marange.
India is the biggest supplier of cut and polished diamonds and diamond jewellery to the US. In 2001, about $8 billion worth of gems and jewellery were exported to the US.
US department of treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) enforces legal sanctions that prohibit all dealings, both directly and through third-parties, with the Zimbabwean entities that own or control the Marange region diamond mines and the diamonds exported by these entities.
"It is a KP's decision that Zimbabwe can export its rough diamonds. The industry leaders and government in US should accept the fact. There is no point in harassing the diamantaires who are doing genuine business there," a member of Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) Harish Shah said.
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Indians-find-it-tough-to-sell-diamonds-in-US/articleshow/14118862.cms
June 17th, 2012, 09:55 AM
SURAT: The year 2012 may well prove to be the toughest one for diamantaires in the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in the city as far as prices of rough diamonds are concerned.
Global industry leaders from diamond mining sector and consulting firms have predicted that prices of rough diamonds are set to rise between 3 per cent and 10 per cent due to demand from emerging markets like India, China, Hong Kong and UAE and a gradual decrease in global production of rough diamonds in 2011.
Dinesh Navadia, president, Surat Diamond Association (SDA), said, "Prices of roughs are increasing and international buyers are resisting the polished prices asked by traders in India. We can't sell polished diamonds at discounted rates when we know that the prices of rough diamonds are increasing."
The world's diamond production has already passed its peak recorded in 2005 and is about 175 million carats. Today, global output of diamonds has reached a plateau. There are no new rough sources that would significantly increase supply in the market over the next decade.
Bain & Company, a global management consulting firm has stated in its recent study that the global diamond output increased slightly in 2011 over 133 million carats a year earlier. By 2017 the industry will be able to reach pre-crisis levels within the 150-160 million carat range and by 2020 drive the production to 175 million carats, due to launch of new projects.
For example, Rio Tinto, the third-largest diamond mining company in the world, plans to launch an underground mine in Australia in 2013, which will boost its diamond output compared to 7.4 million carats mined in 2011.
While the global rough diamond market per annum is pegged at $14 billion, annual demand for rough stones in India is pegged at around $9-10 billion. In 2010-11, India imported $11 billion worth of rough diamonds.
Industry sources said major miners are facing gradual depletion of existing diamond fields. In fact, the market is now supplied by the mines, which were discovered before 1970s. Large diamond deposits can be developed for decades - first by way of open-pit mining and then by underground mining, but their resources are still not infinite. For a long time there have been no discoveries of new large diamond fields.
"Depleting diamond fields are one of the factors limiting production growth because miners tend to extend the life of the asset as long as possible. Incidentally, this (depletion of deposits) is also one of the reasons why mining companies do not seek to substantially increase production. It is better to maintain stable supply for a long time by selling roughs at increasing prices, than to extract the entire volume within a few years," said a DTC sightholder.
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Prices-of-rough-diamonds-to-increase-in-2012/articleshow/14188482.cms
June 18th, 2012, 07:43 PM
SURAT : With the view to get international recognition, the Southern Gujarat Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SGCCI) is planning to go global by organizing trade fairs in the field of textile and gems and jewellery sectors in the countries like Thailand, Dubai and South Africa.
A brainchild of Paresh Patel, newly elected president of SGCCI, the project 'SGCCI International' was envisaged to provide an international platform and recognition for the activities conducted by the oldest chamber of commerce of Gujarat.
The international exhibitions, according to SGCCI president, have been planned in the month of September, October and November this year. In September, the SGCCI will organize a gems and jewellery exhibition in Thailand followed by diamonds and textile exhibition in Johannesburg in South Africa and the exhibition on gems and jewellery in Dubai in November.
Sources said the SGCCI officebearers have organized a series of meetings with the industrialists and entrepreneurs from both the textile and diamond sectors in the city for their support in the international exhibitions starting from September-2012. Most of the diamond and textile company owners, textile machine manufacturers etc. have agreed for their wholehearted support in the international exhibitions.
Paresh Patel, SGCCI president said "It is our endeavour to project the oldest chamber of commerce of Gujarat internationally by organizing trade fairs and exhibitions. We have received an overwhelming support from South Africa, Dubai and Thailand for conducting exhibitions there"
Patel added "The gems and jewellery and textile exhibition planned in Johannesburg in South Africa is going to be a big event. The leading diamond and textile companies in the city will participate and we will take our trade delegation to Zambia, Namibia and Botswana for further exploring business opportunities."
Source : http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Southern-Gujarat-Chamber-of-Commerce-and-Industry-to-hold-global-trade-events/articleshow/14233345.cms
June 19th, 2012, 12:45 PM
SURAT: A city-based diamantaire has set up, what is touted to be the state's first solar energy production equipments plant, at Pipodhara village on the outskirts of Surat.
The plant, set up by Goldi Green Technology with an investment of Rs 350 crore, will produce solar modules and panels.
The first phase of operations of this plant located, some 20 km off Surat city, will begin in 15 days' time.
Goldi Green had inked a memorandum of understanding with state government in 2011 during the vibrant Gujarat summit for setting up a plant for green energy.
"We have imported the technology from Japanese firm Nisshinbo. The robotic stringers and lay ups will be supplied by Team Technik, Germany. Machinery installation work is in full swing and automatic plant will be operational by the end of August," said Tulsi Dholakiya, managing director of the company and a leading diamantaire of Surat.
Tribal and rural workers getting trained at technical training centre of Waghaldhara in Valsad district are being employed. They would be trained on 10 MW capacity plant from July 1.
"This plant is imported from China and workers would be trained to run the plant properly. We will go on increasing capacity of the main plant in a phased manner reaching our optimum target of 100 MW in four years' time," said Chetan Shah, one of the working directors of the firm.
This plant will produce solar energy modules for capacities ranging from three watt to 300 watts for different uses from street lights, LED, lanterns, solar water pumps to roof-top solar panels.
"We already have a long list of customers. A number of new societies are coming up with plans to use these modules for their general use," said Bharat Bhut, a director in the firm.
Source : http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Diamantaire-sees-glitter-in-green-energy/articleshow/14257503.cms
June 21st, 2012, 08:16 AM
SURAT: The bilateral business relations between India and Pakistan, mainly in the gems and jewellery sector, are set to strengthen in the coming days. For the first time, the Pakistani government and the Pakistan Gems and Jewellery Development Company (PGJDC) have decided to participate in India International Jewellery Show (IIJS) organized by the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) in August.
Sources said the PGJDC has accepted GJEPC's proposal to set up Pakistan pavilion where the Pakistani jewellers would display their colour gems stone and other precious metal jewellery at the five-day long IIJS event starting from August 23 in Mumbai. A special Pakistani ramp show will be organized to display the jewellery designs by some of the reputed jewellery companies of Pakistan.
Recently, a 13-member delegation from India's gems and jewellery sector was led by vice-chairman of GJEPC Sanjay Kothari to Karachi on the first-time invitation by the PGJDC to participate in the first-ever Pakistan International Gems and Jewellery event from June 7 to June 11.
GJEPC's objective to lead this first ever delegation to Pakistan included fostering strong bilateral trade relationship, interacting with the prospective traders and establish areas of co-operation and ultimately establish India as the most competitive centre for sourcing diamonds & jewellery globally and initiate direct trade between the two nations. A seven-point agenda was presented before the Pakistani government and the PGJDC authorities, which included improved duty structure between two countries, exchange of students and faculty between the two countries, facilitating direct import of gemstones from Pakistan, India to export jewellery to Pakistan and last but not the least, Pakistani contingent to participate in the IIJS signature 2013 and host the Pakistani pavilion.
Kothari told TOI, "There has been limited trade between the Pakistani gems and jewellery traders and their Indian counterparts via Dubai and Singapore. What is needed is planning dealing with goods movements and customs duty. India-Pakistan trade will see a 500% increase in trade owing to the seven-point agenda and the sheer price competitiveness that India presents to the hitherto untapped Pakistani markets."
Souce :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Pakistani-jewellers-to-participate-in-the-IIJS-show/articleshow/14305991.cms
June 23rd, 2012, 07:47 AM
Diamond City Surat may lose its jewel SEZ (http://www.dnaindia.com/india/report_diamond-city-surat-may-lose-its-jewel-sez_1704448)
In what could be a big blow to Surat’s ambitions of emerging as a hub of jewellery export, the Gujarat Hira Bourse (GHB) is likely to seek de-notification of its Gem & Jewellery SEZ in the Diamond City.
In case GHB decides to surrender SEZ status, it would join a long list of developers in the state who have either de-notified or are planning to seek de-notification of their SEZs.
“We are considering surrendering SEZ status of Ichhapore Gem & Jewellery SEZ. The SEZs are not attractive any more for businesses due to withdrawal of tax benefits and other incentives,” Nanu Vanani, secretary, Gujarat Hira Bourse (GHB), said.
Vanani, who is also a BJP MLA, however, added that a final decision about seeking de-notification of the SEZ has not been taken yet.
The de-notification of the SEZ would be a major setback for ambitions to make Surat the hub of jewellery exports. Surat is already the hub of diamond manufacturing, and a similar position in jewellery, would have added to the city’s dominance in the global gem & jewellery business.
Spread over 100 hectares, the Gem & Jewellery Park comprises SEZ and Domestic Tariff Area (DTA). It is coming up in Ichhapore, just a few km from Surat city. The park is expected to house 300 plus jewellery manufacturing units, which would employ some 1.25 lakh people.
Gujarat Hira Bourse president, Chandrakant Sanghavi, however, denied that there are plans to surrender SEZ status of the gem & jewellery park.
Vanani exuded confidence that even if SEZ status is surrendered, it would not have any impact on total investment in the park, which is expected to cross Rs5,500-Rs6,000 crore.
“Instead of SEZ, unit owners will set up units in DTA. So we do not expect any adverse impact as far as overall investments are concerned,” he said further.
Announced in 2004, the park was expected to become operational in three to four years. However, it ran into one delay after another. The GHB has so far spent close to Rs200 crore for the project. The basic infrastructure at the park is now in place, and seven units are currently under construction.
“Six jewellery units are coming up in the DTA, while one is under construction in the SEZ area. These units are likely to commerce operations soon,” said Vanani.
July 15th, 2012, 07:18 AM
SURAT: For the Indian diamond industry, the crash of 2008 was more benevolent than the coming diamond crash of 2012. Reason: In 2008, the business came to a virtual standstill as the diamantaires did not buy nor sell and that when the business gradually normalized in 2009, activity resumed and prices stabilized.
In the present scenario, the diamantriares are buying rough diamonds at higher rates and losing about 10-20 per cent on the polished they are selling every month. In the past one month, the prices of polished diamonds have come down by almost 10 per cent in Mumbai and Surat markets as the consumer spending on diamond studded jewellery across the world has decreased following an uncertain global economic outlook.
"There is no equilibrium in the rough and polished diamond prices as it was in 2009. Presently, the rough diamonds are over priced and the value of polished diamond is diminishing with each passing day. However, it is very difficult for the diamantaires, especially the small and medium players, to operate below the breakeven margin," a DTC sightholder said.
Throughout 2010, which was a profitable year for the diamond industry, both rough and polished prices rose more or less in tandem; there was a manageable gap in the pace of growth between rough and polished. However, many traders in Surat and Mumbai were willing to speculate and buy rough at high prices, assuming that polished would increased by the time their resultant output reached the markets.
But, the traders miscalculated in a big way. In 2011, the market went into a steep upward spiral price-wise as the rough prices had doubled since the third quarter of 2009, when rough and polished prices had been in equilibrium. Polished price growth, however, then lagged some 25 per cent behind the corresponding rough. Then came the third quarter 2011 crash, and most diamond companies literally saw the profits made earlier wiped out. Though producers like De Breers, Alrosa, BHP Billiton still made record profits, many of their clients in India lost money and were left with stocks that had lost, and still were losing, enormous value.
Diamond market analyst Aniruddha Lidbide said, "The polished diamond market has collapsed badly and there is no sign of recovery. The leading mining companies like Alrosa and De Beers should think in favour of diamantaires and reduce the rough diamond prices by another 7-10 per cent in order to bring the polished and rough diamond prices in equilibrium."
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Diamonds-Price-imbalance-major-worry/articleshow/14937282.cms
July 19th, 2012, 08:26 PM
SURAT: As the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat is passing through a tough phase, diamantaires are keeping their fingers crossed over the success of the upcoming India International Jewellery Show (IIJS) 2012 being organized by Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) in Mumbai next month.
Termed as Asia's second largest jewellery event after Hong Kong International Jewellery show, IIJS has continuously evolved as India's official platform for showcasing the nation's manufacturing capabilities and providing an extensive platform for across-the-board B2B trade.
However, a sharp fall in the polished diamond prices in the past six months and other problems such as the liquidity crisis and the weakening of the rupee have cast a dark shadow on the manufacturing of the glittering gem stones in Surat.
This year, IIJS marks the 29th edition and will be spread over an approximate area of 46,000 sq mt and will have more than 1,800 booths, which would be occupied by an estimated 800 exhibitors from India as well as overseas. Last year, there was a 24 per cent increase in visitor registration and more than 33,000 trade visitors thronged the show in a span of five days from India and abroad.
While the loose polished diamond prices have dropped down by almost 15-20 per cent in Surat and Mumbai markets, the certified polished diamond prices in all the categories have also decreased by 4-5 per cent. This has left a great impact on the diamond manufacturing units, especially the small diamond units.
"There is a price resistance among the overseas buyers. It is not possible for the diamantaires to sell the polished diamonds at discounted rates at the upcoming IIJS show when we know that the rough diamond prices are not going to come down," said Samjibhai Patel, a polished diamond dealer in Mahidharpura diamond market.
Patel said, "There are many small units which have drastically reduced the working hours from 12 to 6 hours a day. It is becoming extremely difficult for these small units to survive."
As per the official figures from the GJEPC, India exported $1.4 billion worth of polished diamonds in June registering a 35 per cent decrease compared to same month previous year. On the other hand, the rough diamond imports fell 26 per cent year on year to $1 billion.
A leading DTC sightholder participating in the IIJS show told TOI, "This year, expectations are very less from the buyers visiting the IIJS show. The polished diamond market has crashed like never before and there is fear of yet another downward crash before the IIJS show."
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Diamantaires-expect-less-from-India-International-Jewellery-Show-this-year/articleshow/15047732.cms
July 21st, 2012, 09:45 AM
SURAT: Diamantaires in Surat are upset with the delay by the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council's (GJEPC) Surat office in releasing nearly 85 parcels of rough diamonds worth Rs 300 crore imported in the city.
The parcels have been held up due to the internal problems between GJEPC's Surat and Mumbai offices. Industry sources said the rough diamonds have been imported from South Africa, Zimbabwe, Canada and Australia have been stranded in the GJEPC's Surat office from the past two days.
GJEPC works closely with the Government of India and the trade to implement and oversee the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme. The council has been appointed as the nodal agency in India under the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme.
Being a nodal agency to issue Kimberley certificates in Mumbai and Surat, GJEPC's role is to clear the parcel of rough diamonds as well as the export of rough and polished diamonds by issuing and clearing the KP certificates. Imported diamonds are taken from the Mumbai's international airport to the customs clearance center in either Mumbai or Surat.
The importer will receive authorization to retrieve the stones after presenting the GJEPC with a Kimberley certificate from the exporting nation and other relevant documents. Parcels are examined against the accompanying documents to ensure that value and carat weight are accurate and released on the same day.
Dinesh Navadia, president of Surat Diamond Association (SDA) told TOI, "We have received complaints from the diamond manufacturers about the rough diamond parcels worth Rs 300 crore stranded in the GJEPC's Surat office from the past two days. There is a system of clearing the goods on the same day of arrival in the custom." Talking about the reason behind the delay, Navadia said, "The GJEPC's Surat office has been clearing about 40 parcels of rough diamonds daily after verifying the Kimberley Process certificates issued by the originating country and verifying other import documents. From the past two days, the signing authority has been called to Mumbai to solve the internal issues and thereby leaving the entire industry to suffer."
However, GJEPC office-bearers have dismissed the diamantaires claims. "The hue and cry is uncalled for. It was for one day the signing authority was called to Mumbai and we have made arrangement to see that the parcels are cleared by today evening. From Saturday, everything will be streamlined and there will be no such issues," Sabhyasachi Ray, executive director of GJEPC said.
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Roughs-worth-300-crore-stranded-in-GJEPC-office/articleshow/15067294.cms
July 22nd, 2012, 08:33 AM
SURAT: The who's who of the diamond and jewellery industry in the world would descend in Mumbai in October as India is hosting the 35th World Diamond Congress (WDC) for the first time in the country.
The WDC, hosted by the Bharat Diamond Bourse (BDB) and the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) from October 14 to October 17, will find solutions to the hottest issues of the diamond business in the world and determine the future sectoral strategy for the same amid the presence of the industry leaders and stakeholders from around the world.
The decision to select India to host the biennial World Diamond Congress in 2012 was taken by the executive committee of the World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB) and its sister organization, the International Diamond Manufacturers Association (IDMA) recently.
Industry sources said that selecting Mumbai as a venue would provide an opportunity for delegations from the 28 bourses affiliated to the WFDB around the world to familiarize themselves with the developments taking place in the Indian diamond industry.
Back in 2005, the Bharat Diamond Bourse hosted the joint Presidents' Meeting of the WFDB and IDMA. At that time, the Bharat Diamond Bourse (BDB) complex was still under construction. Now, the BDB shifted to the Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC) having eight tower complex housing more than 2,500 diamond firms depicting the enormous strength of one of the world's leading diamond trading centres.
"The preparation for the 35th WDC is going on in a full swing and the entire diamond industry is eagerly waiting for the four days long meeting to solve the issues pertaining to the diamond business" said a senior office-bearer of Bharat Diamond Bourse (BDB).
Source :- http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/India-diamond-industry-to-hold-World-Diamond-Conference-in-October/articleshow/15077400.cms
August 1st, 2012, 11:51 AM
SURAT: Sharp fall in polished diamond prices may be worrying diamantaires in Surat. But, high net worth individuals are seeing a sparkle in the crashing prices.
Anticipating some correction by Christmas, increasing number of HNIs are looking at diamonds as an alternative to gold as a safe shelter for their money, amid financial uncertainty and economic and currency instability.
Polished diamond prices have fallen by 15%-20% in the last two months.
Most HNIs, according to the industry leaders, have started a rush at the big retail houses to purchase loose diamonds, anticipating the prices in the short-term - before Christmas season - might recover by seven to eight per cent.
Source : TOI (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Diamonds-are-now-investors-best-friend/articleshow/15299285.cms)
August 8th, 2012, 08:07 PM
SURAT: A news from Mumbai has rocked world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat. Classic Diamonds (India) Ltd., one of the few listed diamond companies based in Mumbai, has informed the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) that a consortium of bankers, including State Bank of India (SBI), have withdrawn various working capital and export financing facilities given to the company and asked the company to repay their outstanding balances on August 7.
The company also informed the BSE that it is in the process of negotiation with the banks, which are covered by way of mortgage of various properties and assets of the company in Surat and Mumbai.
Last year, the company surrendered its sightholder status to Diamond Trading Company (DTC) after posting a huge loss of $5.5 million during the year as compared with a net profit of $1.1 million in 2010. It also closed down its 2.20 lakh square feet diamond cutting and polishing factory in Surat's Ashwani Kumar Road, explaining that it did not require such large manufacturing facility after the company surrendered its DTC sight.
Read More Here (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/First-listed-diamond-company-in-trouble/articleshow/15409620.cms)
August 19th, 2012, 10:39 PM
SURAT: As the worsening situation in the world's biggest diamond cutting and manufacturing centre in India has started affecting the entire diamond value chain in the global market, Russian diamond mining company, Alrosa - world's biggest mining company after De Beers - has come to the rescue of Indian diamantaires.
For the first time since the downturn in 2009, Alrosa has sold an estimated $130 million worth of rough diamonds to Russia's state-owned Gokhran in the second quarter of 2012 in order to bring price stability and to reduce the supply of rough diamonds in the global market, especially in India
Read Full Story Link (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Alrosas-move-may-rescue-diamond-sector/articleshow/15561364.cms)
August 20th, 2012, 08:37 PM
In slowdown, glitter is in diamond jewellery business (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/In-slowdown-glitter-is-in-diamond-jewellery-business/articleshow/15575389.cms)
SURAT: A small diamond manufacturer in Mahidharpura Ghanshyam Bothadwa is less worried about the deteriorating prices of polished diamonds and the slowdown experienced in the industry for the last few months. When the stock of rough diamonds is not enough for his 100-odd diamond workers, Bothadwa shifts about 80 per cent of them to his jewellery manufacturing unit to design exquisite rings, pendants and diamond-studded wrist watches. These jewellery articles are sold to some of the big jewellery retail showrooms in Surat and Mumbai.
A silent revolution is sweeping world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat. The diamond city is fast emerging as a diamond jewellery manufacturing centre with many small and medium diamantaires moving up the value chain and adding value to the glittering stones.
Many small and medium diamantaires in the diamond hub of Varachha and Mahidharpura have been using about 70 per cent of the polished diamonds processed in their factories for designing exquisite diamond jewellery while the rest is sold in the diamond markets.
Bothadwa is among very few in the industry, who have created a niche for themselves by manufacturing diamond-studded wrist watches for international brands such as Police, Armani, Rado, Tommy Hilfiger, Diesel, Fastrack, etc. He purchases branded wrist watches from the market and studs them with glittering diamonds. The masterpieces are then sold to showrooms in Surat and Mumbai.
"Last month I sold a diamond-studded branded wrist watch to a leading jewellery retail showroom in Mumbai for Rs 1.5 lakh. After a few days, when one of my friends visited the showroom and inquired about the same watch, he was quoted a price of Rs 2.75 lakh," said Bothadwa.
Samji Gabani, another diamond jewellery manufacturer, who is into manufacturing diamond-studded rings and pendants for the past two years in Varachha, said, "I started diamond jewellery manufacturing unit to add value to the diamonds processed in my factory. Our annual turnover and the profit margin have doubled up for the past two years."
He added, "The rings and pendants manufactured by us are always cheap compared to the ones available in big jewellery retail showrooms. The reason is that we use polished diamonds processed in our factory."
President of Surat Diamond Association Dinesh Navadia told TOI, "Surat is emerging as a diamond jewellery manufacturing centre. Many small and medium unit owners have started value-addition work to the glittering gems. Also, many have invested into latest technologies like computer-aided design (CAD) machines for manufacturing jewellery."
August 27th, 2012, 08:58 PM
SURAT : Diamanaitres in the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat are worried as the five-days long India International Jewellery Show (IIJS) organised by the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) has failed to signal a significant boom in polished diamonds and diamond jewellery.
The five-day long IIJS show closed on Monday with exhibitors, mostly from loose diamond and diamond jewellery segments, losing confidence over the consumer demand in the domestic market ahead of Diwali in November and the ensuing wedding season.
Small and medium diamond manufacturers in the city remain cautious due to high rough prices and low profit margins. Large Indian manufacturers are holding relatively high inventories of polished diamonds as they have maintained their operations in an attempt to avoid losing workers.
Industry sources said the Indian consumers have moved from high quality goods to relatively cheaper diamonds. The skyrocketing prices of gold, which is at Rs 31000 per gram and the effect of volatile rupee remains a core concern among Indian jewellery wholesaler and retailers.
A leading DTC sightholder whose company participated in the IIJS show told TOI "This year expectations are very less from the buyers. The gold jewellery demand in the country has slumped in the second quarter and it is expected to remain at the same level till Diwali festival. The polished diamond market has crashed like never before and there is fear of yet another downward crash."
This year IIJS marks the 29th edition and was spread over an approximate area of 46,000 sq. mtrs and had than 1,800 booths which would be occupied by an estimated 800 exhibitors from India as well as overseas. Last year, there was a 24 percent increase in visitor registration and more than 33,000 trade visitors thronged the show in the span of five days from India and abroad.
Source :- TOI (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/India-International-Jewellery-Show-dampens-spirit-of-Surat-diamantaires/articleshow/15829981.cms)
August 28th, 2012, 07:45 PM
SURAT: With uncertainty prevailing over the prices of polished diamond and the demand for the diamond jewellery dwindling in key markets, the Indian diamond industry is planning to launch a generic advertisement campaign worth $8 million to promote diamond jewellery in Indian and Chinese markets.
Industry sources said there is a vacuum in the generic marketing of diamond jewellery after De Beers ended its five-year-long 'a diamond is forever' advertisement campaign in India. The De Beers advertisement campaign changed the mindsets of the consumers about diamond jewellery.
Official sources said big diamond companies affiliated to Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) have unanimously decided to launch the advertising campaign of its own in India and China. For this, the GJEPC is in the process of earmarking $4 million to be spent on the campaign in India and the same amount will be utilized for China too.
"We are looking at generic marketing for diamond jewellery in India and China. An effective ad campaign, like that of the De Beers is set to drive the sales of diamond jewellery. We are in the process of hiring a leading advertising company to run the campaign," said vice-chairman, GJEPC, Sanjay Kothari.
India and China are key markets for diamond jewellery after US, having a total $12 billion worth of annual sales. In 2010, the diamond jewellery sales in India and China recorded growth of 31 per cent and 25 per cent respectively. Unfortunately, both the markets lack generic marketing to increase the sale of diamond jewellery.
In 2008, GJEPC launched the Anant marketing initiative to promote jewellery in India. The demand for diamond jewellery increased by 20 per cent year-on-year.
"We are calling on the global diamond centres such as Israel, Belgium and Dubai in particular to join the effort. It is crucial to create awareness about diamonds and diamond jewellery among the consumers," said Kothari.
Source :- TOI (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Industry-to-spend-8-million-on-diamond-jewellery-promotion-in-India-China/articleshow/15905792.cms)
September 2nd, 2012, 07:40 AM
SURAT: Even as the diamond jewellery demand
among the American consumers in the US is
stable with just three months to go for the
Christmas season, all is not well with the Indian
diamond industry. For the first time since the global economic
downturn in 2008, the export of polished
diamonds has decreased by a staggering 42 per
cent at $4.8 billion in the last four months since
April-2012 compared to $8.3 billion during the
same period in the previous year in 2011. As per the latest figures published by the Gems
and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC),
the volume of polished diamonds exported by the
country has seen a sharp fall of about 95 per cent
at 95 million carats in the last four months since
April-2012 compared to 200 million carats exported during the same period in previous year. Industry sources said the dealers and jewellery
companies in US, China, Belgium and UAE are
grappling with rising diamond inventories and
falling prices, as the slack global economy
prolongs a year-long slump. It is estimated that
about $20-$25 billion worth of polished gems are in the diamond inventories. Reason: the diamantaires indulged in a large-
scale round tripping or circular trading of the
polished diamonds by importing and exporting
the same goods since 2009. US followed by UAE
were the top destinations for round-tripping of
goods. Interestingly, the diamantaires were not in the
position to import the polished diamonds in
2012 following the Central government suddenly
imposing 2 per cent import duty on polished
diamonds in January-2012. In 2010-11, India exported $28 billion worth of
polished diamonds against the import of $20
billion worth of polished diamonds. "The rough diamond market has experienced
softened demand since the beginning of the year.
The premier diamond jeweller and luxury retailer -
with locations in fashion capitals from New York
and Beverly Hills to Paris, Beijing and Hong Kong -
estimated that market prices have dipped 8 per cent since April-2012," said a senior executive
with GJEPC. Diamond prices are still struggling to recover
since falling off a cliff over a year ago, when the
global economic outlook darkened suddenly,
spoiling the plans of speculators who had
stocked up in anticipation of a stronger economic
recovery after the 2008-09 crisis. Successive waves of the European sovereign debt
crisis kept prices low and leery lenders passed
higher borrowing costs on to diamantaires, the
craftsmen who cut diamonds and who depend on
financing for 90 per cent of their rough diamond
September 3rd, 2012, 03:44 AM
KOLKATA/AHMEDABAD: After a lull of almost two months, the diamond industry of Surat is witnessing a sudden spurt in demand. Importers from the US, UAE, China and Europe have started placing orders with the Indian diamond trade. The industry hopes that September will be a better month. But Gem and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) feels that even though there is a positive swing, diamond exports in the current fiscal will be less by 15-20 per cent compared to FY12.
"The initial months of the current fiscal had not been good as the government imposed a 2 per cent duty on imported cut and polished diamond. This resulted in a 30 per cent drop in trading exports," said Rajiv Jain, chairman of GJEPC. During the first quarter of the financial year,the industry's cut and polished diamond exports fell by 25 per cent in rupee terms to Rs 21,902 crore.
The recently concluded InternationalIndia Jewellery Show (IIJS) has given a fresh boost to the diamond exports, Jain said. In FY12, India had exported $42.84 billion of gems and jewellery. Diamonds accounted for 54 per cent of the exports, with goldjewellery contributing 38 per cent and coloured gemstones and others contributing 1 per cent each, whereas the share of rough diamonds was at 4 per cent.
September 7th, 2012, 10:11 AM
SURAT: The liquidity crisis that diamond industry says is worst-ever in 50 years is nothing but manmade, unlike the crash of 2008 following the global economic downturn. And, no one else but the big and medium diamond companies enjoying huge credit lines with the Indian banks are to be blamed for this.
As per industry estimates, several diamantaires have diverted at least Rs 30,000 crore worth of working capital loans borrowed from the foreign, private and national banks in the real estate sector and speculative buying of rough diamonds since 2010. Now, with the downturn in the real estate too and falling rough prices, big players are finding their investments stuck up.
A major chunk of these loans were borrowed through round-tripping through which a small tribe of diamond traders got cheap finance against export of same set of diamonds over and over again.
They used the finance obtained from several high-street lenders to dress up past losses on their books, carry out speculative deals in rough diamonds and diverting substantial part in the real estate sector.
These loans were mostly borrowed for export finance at London Interbank Offered Rate (Libor) from the banks and that it works out 5.5-6% cheaper than minimum rupee loans extended by banks to corporates.
"A huge amount of cheap bank finance availed by a few black sheep in the industry is diverted to real estate and speculative deals in rough diamonds since 2010. The money is being pumped out from the diamond pipeline and this is creating a lot of problems for the rest of the players," Sanjay Kothari, vice-chairman, Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), told TOI.
Calling the export figures as false and manipulative, Kothari said, "The export of $28 billion worth of polished diamonds and the import of $20 billion worth of polished diamonds in 2010-11 was the classic example of round-tripping. India is a diamond exporter and there is no need for importing polished diamonds. This shows how the 'black sheep' have played the trick to misuse the bank finance."
"The industry players can't be allowed to misuse the public money borrowed on cheap interest rates from the banks for their personal gains," said Martin Rapaport, chairman, Rapaport group, a leading US-based service provider for diamond and jewellery industry.
September 10th, 2012, 08:35 PM
Diamantaires eye Hong Kong fair to beat slump (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Diamantaires-eye-Hong-Kong-fair-to-beat-slump/articleshow/16342327.cms)
SURAT: Reeling under a self-made liquidity crisis and falling prices of polished gems, diamantaires in Surat are hoping for an upward swing in their fortunes at the upcoming Hong Kong Jewellery and Gem Fair.
But the mood is tentatively shifting, as diamantaires look at the show to script a turnaround story ahead of the Christmas season.
"The success of HK jewellery show will decide the fate of the Indian diamond industry for the rest of 2012," said Sanjay Kothari, vice-chairman, Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC).
"The market has recovered slightly and we hope the upcoming Christmas festival to remain successful," he added.
For the first time in the past six months, smiles are starting to appear on the faces of many diamantaires. There seems to be a sense of optimism about what the world's number one jewellery show may bring and that there are indications that the 'green shoots' of recovery are emerging.
The Hong Kong fair to be held from September 19 to September 23 is world's biggest gems and jewellery event with over 3,300 exhibitors from about 46 countries in the world and over 50,000 buyers from around 135 countries. The fair's September schedule makes it ideal for jewelers replenishing stocks for peak shopping seasons such as Christmas, New year and Valentine's Day.
It was first time since the global economic downturn in 2008, the export of polished diamonds decreased by a staggering 42 per cent at $4.8 billion in the last four months since April-2012 compared to $8.3 billion during the same period in the previous year in 2011.
Industry sources said the dealers and jewellery companies in U.S, China, Belgium and UAE are grappling with rising diamond inventories and falling prices, as the slack global economy prolongs a year-long slump.It is estimated that about $20-$25 billion worth of polished diamonds are in the inventories.
Nevertheless, with just few days to go for Hong Kong show, the diamond jewellery consumer market in Asia has seen a much- awaited recovery with the prices of polished diamond moving up following the inquiries from the buyers.
Vijay Sheth, chairman of Carbon Craft, a Hong Kong-based diamond firm told TOI, "The Asian market is on a recovery mode ahead of the HK jewellery event. The buyer inquiries have increased over the past one week and we hope the show will further spur demand for polished diamonds and jewellery in Asia."
September 11th, 2012, 08:11 PM
Hong Kong show may help diamond industry regain shine (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Hong-Kong-show-may-help-diamond-industry-regain-shine/articleshow/16356760.cms)
SURAT: Reeling under 'self-made' liquidity crisis and falling prices of polished gems, diamond industry in Surat is now hoping that the upcoming Hong Kong Jewellery and Gem Fair will help them script a turnaround story.
The fair to be held from September 19 to September 23 is world's biggest gems and jewellery event with over 3,300 exhibitors from about 46 countries in the world and over 50,000 buyers from more than 135 countries. The fair's September schedule makes it ideal for jewellers replenishing stocks for peak shopping seasons such as Christmas, New Year and Valentine's Day.
For the first time in six months, there is a sense of optimism among diamantaires that the jewellery show may boost their industry and that there are indications that the 'green shoots' of recovery are emerging.
"The success of HK jewellery show will decide the fate of the Indian diamond industry for the rest of 2012," said Sanjay Kothari, vice-chairman, Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC). "The market is recovering and we hope the upcoming Christmas festival to remain successful," he added.
Nevertheless, with just few days to go for Hong Kong show, the diamond jewellery consumer market in Asia, the biggest market after US, is seeing signs of recovery with the prices of polished diamond moving up following the inquiries from the buyers.
Vijay Sheth, chairman of Carbon Craft, a Hong Kong-based diamond firm told TOI, "The Asian market is in a recovery mode ahead of the event. The buyer inquiries have increased over the past one week and we hope the show will further spur demand for polished diamonds and jewellery in Asia."
It was first time since the global economic downturn in 2008, the export of polished diamonds decreased by a staggering 42 per cent at $4.8 billion in the last four months since April-2012 compared to $8.3 billion during the same period in the previous year in 2011.
Industry sources said the dealers and jewellery companies in US, China, Belgium and UAE are grappling with rising diamond inventories and falling prices, as the slack global economy prolongs a year-long slump. It is estimated that about $20-$25 billion worth of polished diamonds are in the diamond inventories.
September 11th, 2012, 08:14 PM
Surat eyes place in GJEPC (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Surat-eyes-place-in-GJEPC/articleshow/16356714.cms)
SURAT: There couldn't be a bigger irony than this. Despite Surat being the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre, it never had any representation in the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), ever since this apex body of the industry was set up in 1966. However, things are set to change now. For the first time, two diamantaires from the city are contesting the election for the diamond panel of GJEPC. The panel is the main decision making body of the Mumbai-based GJEPC
The online voting has started and the results will be declared on September 23.
Two GJEPC members - Dinesh Navadia, president of Surat Diamond Association (SDA) and former SDA president Pravin Nanavaty - are contesting against four Mumbai-based members from the leading diamond companies for the two seats on diamond panel. The representation of the Surat diamond industry in GJEPC has become crucial at the time when the small and medium entrepreneurs have been facing hoards of issues and that their problems have largely gone unheard in the apex body.
The panel is responsible for taking policy decisions related to import-export of diamonds, introducing new schemes and policies for the industry. There are eight members in panel and that they are part of the 20-member Committee of Administration (COA), which decides on the selection of GJEPC's chairman and vice-chairman.
The election is being held after two seats got vacant after two members from the general category-Bakul Mehta and Vasant Mehta, both former chairmen of GJEPC, retired.
Navadia and Nanavaty will take on Sanjeev Agarwal from Gitanjali Gems, Shantilal Barmecha from Impex diamond, Nirav Bhansali from Prism enterprises and Saunak Parekh from Mahendra Brothers.
"From the past many years we have been demanding that the small and medium players should get the opportunity for bank finance, which is enjoyed by the top companies. Even most of the schemes announced by the Central Government are for the benefit of the handful of the big companies and traders. This time around we want to change the way diamond panel is functioning," Navadia told TOI.
Sources said there are over 900 voters from Mumbai, Surat, Jaipur, Delhi and other centre participating in the ongoing online voting process.
Nanavaty, owner of SHE Jewels said, "If we are elected in the panel, diamantaires in Surat will have their voice in the apex body. Surat should get due importance in the GJEPC."
"It is good that two members from Surat are in the election fray," said a senior GJEPC office-bearer.
September 19th, 2012, 03:43 PM
SURAT : Diamantiares in the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat have heaved a sigh of relief as the polished diamond prices have started stabilizing ahead of the Diwali festival in the diamond markets in Mumbai and Surat. Industry sources said the recovery in the polished diamond prices in both the diamond markets in Surat and Mumbai has improved business sentiments and brought some measure of optimism in the diamond trade ahead of the Diwali and the Christmas buying season, which will kick start by the end of September. Polished diamond prices had dropped by as much as 20 per cent in some categories over July and August, depressing business sentiments and bringing a great deal of uncertainty among the diamantaires, especially the diamond exporters and the small and medium manufacturers.
Sources said the five-days long Hong Kong Jewellery and Gem Fair has kick started from Wednesday, infusing a sense of optimism in the global diamond trade over the much-awaited recovery in the polished diamond prices. However, the downward pressure in the market still persists and dealers expect a further drop of some 3-4 per cent in the immediate short-term in the polished diamonds above 1 carat. "The India International Jewellery Show (IIJS), which ran over the last week of August, steadied prices and brightened the outlook. The lowering of rough prices by De Beers at its September Sight, further steadied sentiment and slowed the fall in prices" Sanjay Kothari, vice-chairman, Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC).
October 3rd, 2012, 06:27 PM
Surat ignored in Rs 1,200cr Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council plan (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Surat-ignored-in-Rs-1200cr-Gems-and-Jewellery-Export-Promotion-Council-plan/articleshow/16648197.cms)
SURAT: The Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) has chalked out project proposals worth Rs 1,200 crore in the 12th Five Year plan. Strangely, it just chose to ignore the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat.:evil::wtf:
GJEPC has proposed a jewellery park and convention centre at the cost of Rs 900 crore in Mumbai, a coloured gem stone bourse in Jaipur at the cost of Rs 200 crore, a Rs 9.25 crore worth of jewellery training centre in Kolkata and Rs 40 crore worth of common facility centre (CFC) in 13 diamond centres in Gujarat.
^^ Our State Govt and Central Govt is deaf and blind for Diamond and Jewellery Industry. And if it helps they forget Surat.
Unfortunately, there is nothing proposed for the diamond industry in Surat. This has irked the diamond community, especially the small and medium diamantaires, who have been demanding centre of excellence and jewellery training centre in the diamond hub.
Industry sources said the regional office of GJEPC in Gujarat is responsible for putting forth the projects for the development of the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre. But, the regional office has failed in its endeavour.
Rajiv Jain, chairman, GJEPC, told TOI, "We have not received any specific project request from the regional chairman of GJEPC in Gujarat. If there are any projects to be worked out in Surat, we will certainly look into it. The Central government is likely to sanction Rs 5,000 crore worth of projects for the gems and jewellery sector in the 12th Five Year plan." Dinesh Navadia, president, Surat Diamond Association, said, "It is the responsibility of the regional office of GJEPC to propose projects before the council, which it has not done. Surat is the world's biggest diamond manufacturing hub and GJEPC should focus on strengthening the workers' base, which is fast deteriorating due to competition from other sectors. We want to train our artisans in jewellery making as well."
October 4th, 2012, 06:22 AM
^^ Nothing new... now we are used to this partiality....Doesn't matter still Surat will lead Diamond industry :)
October 12th, 2012, 11:18 PM
Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council to penetrate new emerging markets (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Gems-and-Jewellery-Export-Promotion-Council-to-penetrate-new-emerging-markets/articleshow/16788141.cms)
SURAT: Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) will focus on penetrating new emerging markets in the world, with a special focus on India and China, to promote diamonds and boost consumer confidence, said Vipul Shah, its newly elected chairman.
Shah, who is the CEO of the leading diamond company, Asian Star Company, took over the reins of GJEPC from the outgoing chairman, Rajiv Jain, on Friday.
"The council will penetrate new emerging markets through buyer seller matching programmes or trade delegations in the region. It will continue to promote India as the leading global gem and jewellery destination as well as further consolidate the domestic industry," said Shah.
The global gem and jewellery industry is witnessing a downturn as is India, which otherwise has been considered a leading market for diamond and diamond jewellery consumption. Volatile gold prices, reduced media spends, absence of diamond jewellery promotion, particularly by DTC have limited the growth of this industry in recent years.
In order to provide impetus to the business, Shah announced that a sustained marketing campaign would directly address the need faced by India and other emerging consumer markets such as China. The promotion is aimed at boosting confidence and driving the desire to own diamonds among consumers in India and China.
October 12th, 2012, 11:24 PM
Italian mafia targets Kiran Gems in Antwerp (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Italian-mafia-targets-Kiran-Gems-in-Antwerp/articleshow/16788250.cms)
SURAT: Diamantaires in the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat are reeling under shock following the biggest diamond robbery worth Rs 150 crore by Italian mafia, which targeted Diamond Trading Company (DTC) sightholder, Kiran Gems Private Limited in Belgium on Friday.
Industry sources said the wife of sales manager of Kiran Gems in Belgium, Prashant Bhalani was kidnapped at gun point by the robbers and placed under house arrest on Thursday. The Italian robbers then fitted cameras on Bhalani to get complete record of his movement. He was asked to go to his office at Hoveniersstraat to get the stock of polished diamonds lying in the safe vault. After he handed over the polished diamonds to the mafia, his wife was released.
Confirming the incident, Dinesh Navadia, president, Surat Diamond Association (SDA) said, "The industry is under shock. The diamantaires in Antwerp are no longer safe. This is the second consecutive incident of robbery in the last two years. Time and again, the industry leaders have demanded security of diamond traders in Antwerp, but nothing has been done so far."
In 2010, family members, including the wife and children of Karp Impex owner, Pankaj Maldar, were kidnapped by the mafia at gun point from their house in Antwerp. They were released after 18 hours when a huge stock of diamonds worth crores of rupees was paid as ransom.
Chandrakant Sanghavi, regional chairman, GJEPC told TOI, "This is a very unfortunate incident of an Indian diamond company having been targeted in Antwerp. We are planning to take up the issue with the Antwerp authorities for providing extra security and protection to the diamond traders operating in Belgium."
October 13th, 2012, 02:35 PM
Polished diamond exports from India to remain flat in 2012 (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Polished-diamond-exports-from-India-to-remain-flat-in-2012/articleshow/16796611.cms)
SURAT : Diamantaires in the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat are worried as the polished diamond exports has seen a major decline of 39 per cent in the month of September.
As per the provisional data released by the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), polished diamond exports declined 39 per cent year on year to $1.50 billion in September, while the polished diamond imports plunged 72 per cent to $337 million.
For the 2012 calendar year to date, India's polished diamond exports have fallen 41 percent to $13.282 billion and polished imports dropped 22 percent to $4.141 billion
Rough imports, on the other hand, have increased 7 percent year on year to $10.856 billion, while rough exports were basically flat at $1.236 billion.
India's net diamond account for the first nine months of 2012 registered a polished export deficit of $479 million, which was much improved from a deficit of $4.7 billion one year ago.
Industry sources said that the India's gems and jewelry export growth is likely to be flat this year given the current global economic environment. But given this trend, the GJEPC plans to promote diamonds across India and China and expand into new markets to boost growth.
Last year, the country exported gems and jewelry worth $42.84 billion in the fiscal year that ended on March 31, 2012.
"We feel that the growth will be very much flattish this year because of the current economic situation globally. There is euro zone crisis," said Vipul Shah, the newly elected chairman of the GJEPC. "It will take some time to pick up.... we are looking for the positive Christmas season in the U.S. and hopefully things will start looking better from there on."
October 14th, 2012, 07:31 AM
Antwerp diamond heist: Centre's help sought (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Antwerp-diamond-heist-Centres-help-sought/articleshow/16804905.cms)
SURAT: Rattled by the diamond heist for the second time in the world's biggest diamond trading centre at Antwerp in two years, diamantaires from Surat and Mumbai want the central government and the Indian Embassy in Brussels to take up the issue of their security in Belgium.
The issue would be taken up on their behalf by Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) and Surat Diamond Association (SDA).
DTC sightholder companies owned by Gujarati diamantaires have been targeted by mafias in Antwerp in 2010 and on Thursday last. The heist at KARP Impex in 2010 amounted to Rs 50 crore and the recent one at Kiran Gems was of Rs 150 crore. The gang members had held the family members of diamantaires hostage at the gunpoint in both the cases. The diamantaires were asked to bring the polished diamond stock from the safe vaults and their offices.
"We have received a representation from the owners of diamond companies in Surat and Mumbai, who have offices in Antwerp, asking us to urge the Indian government to take up the issue of diamantaires' security with the Belgian government. We plan to meet the officials of the ministries concerned in New Delhi soon to raise this issue," said a GJEPC official.
The number of people of Indian origin, mainly Gujaratis, in Belgium, is around 14,000. Of them, 5,000 are into diamond trade. Until a few years ago, Jewish traders made up 80% of the business, with Indians accounting for 20%. Now the trend has reversed.
Surat Diamond Association president Dinesh Navadia told TOI, "The Belgian government should ensure safety and security of diamantiares at Antwerp."
October 17th, 2012, 10:26 AM
Members oppose diamond protocol at World Diamond Congress's 35th edition (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Members-oppose-diamond-protocol-at-World-Diamond-Congresss-35th-edition/articleshow/16845748.cms)
SURAT: The diamond source warranty protocol released by a coalition of leading US industry groups including Jewelers of America, the Jewelers Vigilance Committee and the Diamond Manufacturers and Importers Association of America faced tough criticism at the two-day 35th edition of World Diamond Congress that started in Mumbai on Tuesday.
The new protocol is designed to allow buyers and retailers to avoid, if they wish, diamonds from certain areas. While the protocol does not specify what those areas would be, they could include areas like the Marange region of Zimbabwe - which is currently subject to US sanctions - or countries that are not members of the Kimberley Process (KP).
The 35th edition of WDC, which has brought together diamond miners and manufacturers from across the world, is the most prestigious event of the two international bodies, World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB) and International Diamond Manufacturers Association (IDMA). It is being held in India for the first time.
"This system talked of seller's obligations and buyer's rights but clearly not vice versa," said industry analyst and commentator Chaim Evan-Zohar
According to him, acceptance of the protocol would mean that polished diamonds from each mine and each polishing location had to be tracked separately. "This is a nightmare for the alluvial miners, who are precisely the people we need to protect and nourish," Zohar said.
The warranties built into contracts would mean that sellers could be sued even three years after a transaction. Also, he said, the protocol state that irrespective of rulings in local courts, companies could be sued in the US for "other and greater damages."
Industry sources said that the WDC will deliberate on issues including the challenge of ensuring full ydisclosure and transparency with regards to synthetic diamonds, declining demand, and the yneed for the promotion and marketing of diamonds, among others.
"The Congress will serve as the crucial platform for dialogue on burning issues related to the diamond industry such as inconsistent rough diamond supply and the Kimberley Process," said a senior office-bearer of the Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC).
In his opening speech, IDMA president Moti Ganz called upon diamond producers to provide stronger backing and vouch for consistent and continuous rough supplies for the manufacturers.
October 28th, 2012, 06:55 AM
Diamond Trading Company sightholders to get less rough diamonds in 2013 (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Diamond-Trading-Company-sightholders-to-get-less-rough-diamonds-in-2013/articleshow/16986471.cms)
SURAT: Come 2013, the Diamond Trading Company (DTC) sightholders in the world's biggest diamond manufacturing hub in India may get reduced supply of rough diamonds from the leading diamond mining company, De Beers.
De Beers has reported a 31 per cent decline in the rough diamond production in the third quarter of 2012 and diamond production in the first nine months of the year has fallen to a flat 20 per cent.
The decline in diamond production, according to the industry experts, would result in De Beers unable to meet the short-term demand of the sightholders (clients) in 2013.
Anglo American, which owns De Beers, noted that the decline in the rough diamond production in 2012 is due to difficult market conditions and a slope failure at its flagship Jwaneng mine in Botswana in June that temporarily prevented access to the mine's main ore body.
Another reason cited by the company is softening in the polished diamond market and a credit constrained rough diamond market.
Industry sources say that as production has declined, management said it will be unable to meet the sightholders' short-term demand as expressed by their initial applications for goods for the year. De Beers rough sales to sightholders have decreased by 17 per cent to $4.74 billion in the first 10 months of 2012. India has a major share in the De Beers annual supply of rough diamonds as about 50 per cent of the DTC sightholders are Indian companies based in Surat, Mumbai, Antwerp, Hong Kong and Dubai. The annual DTC sales is pegged at $5.5 billion and that about 50 per cent of the diamonds come to India, mainly in Surat for cutting and polishing.
A DTC sightholder said, "There is going to be fewer goods on offer by De Beers in 2013 following decline in diamond production. If the market improves after Diwali festival, the demand for rough diamonds is likely to increase."
The annual demand for rough diamonds in India is pegged between $8-$9 billion. While about 70 per cent of the rough diamond supplies come through De Beers, Alrosa and Rio Tinto, the diamantaires also get direct supplies from diamond mining companies in African countries, Canada etc.
November 18th, 2012, 01:31 PM
Surat Rough Diamond Sourcing India Limited under attack over Zimbabwe rough diamonds (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Surat-Rough-Diamond-Sourcing-India-Limited-under-attack-over-Zimbabwe-rough-diamonds/articleshow/17262140.cms)
SURAT: Surat Rough Diamond Sourcing India Limited (SRDSIL), a diamond consortium set up diamond companies, has come under attack from Partnership Africa Canada (PAC) for allegedly courting diamonds from the controversial Marange diamond fields in Zimbabwe and running a sophisticated price manipulation scheme to deprive the country of millions. Partnership Africa Canada, a Canada-based non-profit organization, works for human rights and to prevent conflict related to natural resource exploitation.
In a report released at the recently concluded Zimbabwe Diamond Conference at Victoria Falls on Wednesday, PAC described the Surat-based SRDSIL and its chairman Ashit Mehta as very close to Zimbabwe's mines minister Obert Mpofu. They were successful in signing a deal of $1.2 billion with the Zimbabwean government for the exclusive access to Marange diamonds in 2010. The deal signalled Surat's willingness to court Marange diamonds despite the Kimberley Process (KP) ban in 2010 and associated reputational risks, the report added.
The report further stated that majority of Marange diamonds are sold in India for less than $100 per carat, while in the parallel market, the stones fetch more than $100 per carat for the benefit of Zimbabwe's political elite. In recent years the average price of legal Marange goods dropped from US$80-$90 per carat in 2011 to between US$50-$60 per carat in late 2012.
Some of this may be legitimately explained by a worldwide drop in rough prices, yet the same goods have been noticed miraculously exiting Dubai trading houses for sister-owned factories in Surat with an average value of US$100-$105 per carat, the PAC report said.
Conservative estimates place the theft of Marange goods at almost US$2 billion since 2008. Although the drop in global prices could partly explain why diamond revenue has declined, there is a sophisticated parallel market in Surat selling diamonds for a higher price.
SRDSIL recently opened its new office at the World Diamond Centre (WDC) in the diamond hub of Varachha. SRDSIL chairman Ashit Mehta was not available for comments, but a senior member of the company asking anonymity said, "Zimbabwe goods have been cleared by KP and there is nothing illegal in importing the Marange goods. We are doing good to the small and medium diamantaires who do not have direct access to the rough diamonds in the open market."
November 18th, 2012, 01:32 PM
Diamantaires worried over falling Hong Kong imports (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Diamantaires-worried-over-falling-Hong-Kong-imports/articleshow/17262129.cms)
SURAT: Alarm bells have started ringing for diamantaires in world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat with Hong Kong's (HK) polished diamond imports falling to a significant 14 per cent year on year to $4.1 billion in the third quarter of 2012.
While the US still remains a large diamond jewellery consuming centre, there can be no doubt that India, China and HK are the centres of future for the diamond industry on all fronts - be it manufacturing, trading or consuming.
Already, HK is a significant partner for India. About 21 per cent of the polished diamond exports by the Indian diamond industry go to Hong Kong. The Diamond Federation of HK, China published data that showed that the polished diamond imports in Hong Kong have dropped 19 per cent in the third quarter of 2012.
HK imports roughly $16 billion worth of polished diamonds per annum and that about 80 per cent come from India. There are over 350 trading offices in HK and about 80 per cent of them are owned by Indians, especially the diamond traders from Surat and Mumbai.
HK is the biggest market for India after Dubai and US and that the drop in polished diamond imports may signal a tough business season ahead. The HK Jewellery and Gems event organized recently failed to please the global diamond industry with the demand for diamond jewellery diminishing amid the falling prices of polished diamonds.
"HK is the biggest export market for diamond industry and a slight fall in demand could result in heavy losses to the diamantaires in Surat," a DTC sightholder said.
November 20th, 2012, 07:39 AM
Diamantaires see more glitter in jewellery making (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Diamantaires-see-more-glitter-in-jewellery-making/articleshow/17286940.cms)
SURAT: If you think that the diamantaires in the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat can only polish gems then you are mistaken. A silent transition from diamond cutting and polishing to jewellery manufacturing is going on in this Rs 80,000 crore industry.
A sizeable number of small and medium diamond manufacturers in Varachha, Katargam and Mahidharpura have forayed into manufacturing of diamond-studded luxury items like wrist watches, pen-drives, mobile phones etc.
Today, it is much easier for diamond manufacturers to market diamonds embedded in pieces of gold jewellery.
A diamond manufacturer is not required to maintain an inventory of jewellery and he can respond individually to a customer's preferences by acquiring a piece of jewellery ready for embedding.
Industry sources said in recent years, highly skilled workers who have expertise in everything related to jewellery production have joined the industry. Their knowledge, skill and ability have made jewellery production and embedding industry more advanced.
Praveen Nanavaty, secretary of Gujarat Heera Bourse and owner of SHE Jewels, told TOI, "The industry is fast moving in the direction of value addition. Surat has an image of being the biggest centre for polishing diamonds, but the small and medium diamantaires are moving up the value chain to produce exquisite diamond-embedded jewellery."
Harshad Kanani, a diamond manufacturer in Mahidhapura, also started manufacturing diamond-studded jewellery two years ago. Last year, he sold Rs 4 crore worth of diamond-studded jewellery to local jewellery stores.
"Value-addition is the need of the day. We are making jewellery for some of the leading jewellery stores in the city as well as in Mumbai," said Kanani.
The marketing of diamonds embedded in jewellery produces an added benefit for the jewellery manufacturer. The jewellery embedded with diamonds maximizes profit from the latter up to 20 per cent.
November 22nd, 2012, 07:12 AM
Diamantaires stockpile roughs fearing further price hike (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Diamantaires-stockpile-roughs-fearing-further-price-hike/articleshow/17317853.cms)
SURAT: Diamantaires in Surat have started stockpiling rough diamonds after the Diamond Trading Company (DTC) began decreasing the prices by about eight per cent recently.
As per the data by Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), India imported $1.48 billion worth of rough diamonds in October, up 109 per cent compared to the same month in the previous year.
In the past one year or so, the rough diamond prices have increased by almost 25 per cent in the global market with the leading diamond mining companies like Alrosa, De Beers and Rio Tinto citing increased cost of mining and other issues like depleting stocks in the existing mines.
Industry sources said that the surge in imports followed a period of lower than usual level of imports that started in May, as manufacturers suffered from stunted polished diamond sales against high rough prices. In October, the DTC lowered prices and decreased supply to meet the market's needs.
In October, the volume of imports, 15.6 million carats, increased 191 per cent compared to the depressed imports in October 2011.
A DTC sightholder said, "There is a fear in the market that the prices of rough diamonds may increase in 2013 following the dwindling supply of the diamond mines globally. However, the diamond manufacturers have started piling up their inventories. There is an even price benefit after the DTC lowered the rough diamond prices by almost 8 per cent."
Dinesh Navadia, president, Surat Diamond Association (SDA) said, "The demand for rough diamonds has increased in the last one month. The import of roughs was quite low during the first seven months of 2012 as the prices had increased. Now since the prices have come down, the diamond manufacturers have started stashing the goods to meet their demands for the coming year."
November 22nd, 2012, 07:16 AM
'Don't change conflict diamond definition' (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Dont-change-conflict-diamond-definition/articleshow/17317846.cms)
SURAT: Despite majority Kimberley Process (KP) committee members, which includes India, not endorsing the change to the definition of conflict diamonds, further calls made by the chair of KP, Ambassador Gillian Milovanovic to update the definition has not gone down well with the Indian diamond industry.
During her recent speech at the Zimbabwe Diamond Conference 2012 in Victoria Falls, Milovanovic said that the KP certificates are not designed to address human rights, financial transparency, economic development, or other important questions though they clearly impact the diamond sector.
Additional certification should apply only to armed conflict and/or armed violence that is demonstrably related to rough diamonds, not to isolated incidents, or to circumstances in which an armed conflict is unrelated to the diamond sector, she had said.
The current definition of 'conflict diamond' refers to a diamond mined in a war zone and sold to finance an insurgency, invading army's war efforts or a warlord's activity, usually in Africa where around two-thirds of the world's diamonds are extracted.
Now, the US which has become the new KP Chair for 2012-13 wants to expand the definition by including rough diamonds which are connected in any way to any kind of armed conflict or violent situations in the producing and trading areas.
"The US is trying to control the KP system. They (US leaders) have got the keys in their hands to bring the African countries like Zimbabwe under their control by implementing such vicious laws through KP. Indian industry will oppose it tooth and nail," said a member of the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC).
He said the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) was given approval by the UN on March 13, 2002 after two years of negotiations between the governments, diamond producers' non-government organizations (NGOs) and that India was a founder member. US was nowhere in the picture at that time.
"The proposal to change the conflict diamond definition will have a far reaching effect on the diamond producing and trading countries across the world. We have to do this with extreme care, because if we try and expand it carelessly, we run the risk of weakening its foundations and undermining the viability of the structure itself," he added.
A DTC sightholder, requesting anonymity, said, "If the new definition is accepted, trading centres like Antwerp India and Dubai will face a lot of problems, as even a small incident of violence over gems would be enough to declare it conflict gems."
November 26th, 2012, 08:21 AM
Chamber of commerce to organise gems and jewellery event in January, 2013 (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Chamber-of-commerce-to-organise-gems-and-jewellery-event-in-January-2013/articleshow/17370642.cms)
SURAT : With the view to promote gems and jewellery in the diamond city, the Southern Gujarat Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SGCCI) has started the preparation for the sixth consecutive 'Sparkle International-2013' in the city.
The four days long gems and jewellery event, which will be organised at the Surat International Exhibition and Convention Centre (SIECC) at Sarsana starting from January 4, 2013, is likely to see participation from the leading diamond and jewellery companies from Surat, Mumbai and other parts of the country.
Official sources said that about 200 to 235 exhibitors in the categories like loose polished diamonds, diamond and studded jewellery, gold and silver jewellery, coloured gems stone dealers and jewelers from Jaipur and the overseas exhibitors from Thailand, Dubai and Namibia are likely to participate in the four days long event.
"This time around the gems and jewellery event will see the participation of the leading jewellery firms from Thailand, Dubai and Namibia. We intend to create a separate international pavilion where the visitors could have an opportunity to look at the jewellery trends going on in the world" said Hetal Mehta, chairman of the
SGCCI's exhibition committee.
According to Mehta, the gems and jewellery event has been supported by the Surat diamond industry. Most of the leading diamond manufacturers in Surat and Mumbai are participating in the event.
Sources said that the Sparkle gems and jewellery show has become an attraction after the GEJCP's India International Jewellery Show (IIJS) held every year at Mumbai.
"In all the previous gems and jewellery shows organised by SGCCI, the exhibitors have received overwhelming response from the consumers in the diamond city and surrounding cities. We are hoping the event will receive same response this year as well" said Mehta.
December 10th, 2012, 07:30 PM
Indian diamantaires face Israel threat (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Indian-diamantaires-face-Israel-threat/articleshow/17562764.cms)
SURAT: While the Russian diamond miner Alrosa has decided to expand its sales activity in Israel over the coming year holding several auctions of rough diamonds larger than 10.8 carats, Indian diamantaires are wary that Israel could eat away into its rough diamond supplies.
Industry sources said the diamantaires have been eyeing the rough diamond stockpile worth over $2 billion with Gokhran, which functions under the Russian ministry of finance. The Russian state repository had suspended the sale of diamonds since 2008 following the global financial crisis when the demand for diamonds slumped.
Last year, Gokhran had announced that it will start selling the stockpile of rough diamonds in 2012 to the prospective buyers.
"It is due to the tax policies of the Indian government that the diamond mining companies like Alrosa and De Beers are not setting up their sales offices in Surat and Mumbai. India is the world's biggest diamond manufacturing centre supplying over 65 per cent of diamonds by volume and 80 per cent by value. The rough diamond requirement is on the very high scale in India then in Israel," said a DTC sightholder.
Nevertheless, few months ago diamond manufacturers of Russia had criticized the move of the Indian diamantaires and the ministry of finance for lobbying with the Russia's ministry of finance to work out a mechanism for the long term supplies from Gokhran.
As per the official statistics of the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), India imported rough diamonds worth $370 million from Russia in 2010-11. Most of the rough diamond import was through the long term contracts and auctions by Alrosa, the world's biggest diamond mining company operating in Russia.
Industry leaders said that big diamond miners like De Beers and Alrosa are not setting up shops in India following the 10.2 per cent service tax levied on the procurement of rough diamonds on consignment basis.
While in Israel and China, there is no duty whatsoever on the consignment import of rough diamonds.
"The Central government must allow consignment import of rough diamonds at remove 10.2 per cent tax in order to attract the diamond mining companies to India" said a senior office-bearer of GJEPC.
Alrosa sells its rough diamond stock through long term contracts to about 22 clients in the world including from India, Israel and Belgium. Now, the Indian diamantaires are eyeing the huge stockpile of rough diamonds lying with Gokhran.
December 15th, 2012, 08:35 AM
Surat upbeat over call to increase polished diamonds' market share (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Surat-upbeat-over-call-to-increase-polished-diamonds-market-share/articleshow/17621234.cms)
SURAT: Diamantaires in world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat have welcomed International Diamond Manufacturers' Association (IDMA) president Maxim Shkadov's suggestion to rough diamond producers to back a joint industry marketing plan for increasing the market share of polished diamonds in the world.
Industry sources said there is an urgent need for the global diamond industry to come on a single platform and address the issues facing the polished diamond and diamond jewellery segments in the luxury consumer product sector. Apart from diamond manufacturers and jewellery companies, diamond miners are largely responsible for the effective marketing of diamonds as a product among the world consumers.
Recently, Shkadov had lashed out at diamond miners in the world about their lack of involvement in the marketing of polished diamonds and diamond jewellery in the world.
"When the client is turned into some kind of money extraction machine, we find ourselves where we are now. Sadly, there is no real competition in the rough diamond market. But the question is why they are not stepping up to shoulder that effort?" asked Shkadov.
"It is very important for diamond miners to step in and help the diamond industry in marketing of polished diamond and diamond jewellery. If the diamond demand is not created, the profit margins of the diamond mining companies are certainly going to be affected," a leading diamond manufacturer said.
President, Surat Diamond Association (SDA), Dinesh Navadia said, "We agree with IDMA president on involvement of diamond miners and mining companies' world-wide in the marketing of polished diamonds. Diamond products world-wide are taking a very tough competition with other luxury products and this is a wake up call for the global diamond industry."
December 18th, 2012, 06:05 AM
Flooded De Beers' mine worries Diamond Trading Company sightholders (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Flooded-De-Beers-mine-worries-Diamond-Trading-Company-sightholders/articleshow/17659494.cms)
SURAT: Diamantaires in India, especially the Diamond Trading Company (DTC) sightholders are worried due to flooding of De Beers' Jwaneng diamond mine in Botswana, leading to production delays.
Jwaneng is the world's largest and most prolific diamond mines contributing a major production of De Beers' total production of 31.3 million carats per year.
Company sources said in the past few weeks, the area has received more than half of the region's annual rainfall. Some of the production areas in Jwaneng diamond mine were temporarily flooded. At this point it is not clear how this will affect the rough diamond supplies in the near term.
Jwaneng is the biggest diamond mine in Botswana and one of the highest-value diamond mines in the world. It is one of four mines owned by Debswana, a 50:50 joint venture between De Beers and the Botswana government. Jwaneng contributes about 60-70 per cent of Debswana's earnings and Debswana in turn contributes about one-third of Botswana's gross domestic product.
In the first week of December, Debswana had cut its forecast of diamond production this year to 19.9 million carats, largely because of a four-week stoppage of work at Jwaneng after the failure of a slope, or part of the wall of the open-pin mining area. Debswana produced 22.8 million carats last year.
De Beers production fell 20 per cent to 19.82 million carats during the first nine months of 2012. As production has declined, De Beers said earlier that it will be unable to meet sightholders' short-term demand as expressed by their initial applications for goods for the year.
De Beers rough sales to sightholders have decreased by 17 per cent to $4.74 billion dollars in the first 10 months of 2012.
"It is expected that De Beers is likely to further decrease its rough diamond sales to the sightholders in 2013 following the production delays in Jwaneng mine in Botswana. This will ultimately create a shortage of rough diamonds in the coming months," said a DTC sightholder.
December 28th, 2012, 12:51 PM
Rough diamond prices may increase in 2013 (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Rough-diamond-prices-may-increase-in-2013/articleshow/17786966.cms)
SURAT: Diamantaires in Surat, which is world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre, may have to brace up for yet another hike in the prices of rough diamonds in 2013. De Beers, the world's biggest diamond mining company, has indicated towards this following a sharp decline in its production in 2012.
The production of rough diamonds at De Beers in 2012 is the lowest since 2009 when it slashed output by 50 per cent owing to global financial crisis. De Beers, owned by Anglo American Plc (AAL), forecasts that it will produce about 27 million carats this year, a 14 per cent decline from 2011.
"The supply is going to be constrained next year so we have an opportunity for further price growth in 2013," CEO of De Beers, Philippe Mellier said.
India is the leading rough diamond importer in the world with annual imports pegged at $8-$9 billion. Diamond prices fell by almost 16 per cent this year after witnessing an upward trend of 20 per cent year - on-year for the last three years. The 27 million carat production in 2012 by De Beers represents a 43 per cent decline from its pre-crisis output in 2008.
Global diamond production rose 26 per cent to $14.41 billion in 2011 as rough diamond prices soared during the year, Kimberley Process data showed. Production fell 3 per cent to 123.99 million carats in 2011 by volume. The average price of production rose 31 per cent to $116.19 per carat.
However, the year 2012 has a different story altogether. The global rough diamond production is expected to fall below 120 million carats following the dwindling production in the mines.
Industry sources said growing Chinese demand will help bolster prices next year as miners struggle to keep pace with growing consumption in emerging economies. Chinese and Indian demand accounted for about 20 per cent of global diamond demand this year and that share will rise to 28 per cent in 2016 as the diamond market grows from $23 billion to $31 billion, according to an Anglo American presentation last month.
"The constrained supply from the mines across the world is set to disturb the supply-demand cycle and will lead to increase in rough diamond prices in 2013," a DTC sight holder said.
January 5th, 2013, 08:48 PM
Modi asks diamond industry to tap international jewellery market
SURAT: On his first visit to the city after the polls, chief minister Narendra Modi called upon the diamond industry to tap the huge potential of international jewellery market and not be content with polishing diamonds.
Inaugurating gems and jewellery exhibition Sparkle -13 at the convention centre at Sarsana, he advised the diamond industry to constantly pursue for value addition. He said, "Indian share in the jewellery market is just Rs 2,700 crore white it has a potential to reach Rs 5,000 crore. Why don't our entrepreneurs work for that global share?"
Thanking Surtis for their overwhelming support in the polls that saw BJP making a clean sweep in the city, Modi asked the entrepreneurs to give 100 per cent defect-free products while providing attractive packaging and developing brand value for their products. He claimed said that during the last decade Gujarat has become a manufacturing hub from a trading state.
January 8th, 2013, 06:33 AM
Lukewarm response to Sparkle-2013 (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Lukewarm-response-to-Sparkle-2013/articleshow/17934694.cms)
SURAT: The four-day long gems and jewellery fair 'Sparkle-2013' failed to meet the expectations of diamantaires and jewellery manufacturers of world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre of Surat. The event was organized by Southern Gujarat Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SGunder the banner of Vibrant Gujarat. The participants expressed concerns over slim margins and interest in a growing diamond jewellery market at the onset of the New Year. A large number of jewellery manufacturers said they were keen to get a first look at the Indian market's demands.
Hare Krishna, Shree Ram Krishna, Venus Jewel, M Suresh & Co., Kiran Gems, Rosy Blue, Karp, H Vinod Kumar & Co., Blue Star, Arjav Diamond were among the top manufacturers that displayed their offerings to visitors and trading partners. Popular brands like KISNA, A Star, Agni, D damas, Parimeeta, Nakshatra, Gili, Orra, Kiha, Tanishq, Jewel Goldi, and Ciemme were on display.
Industry sources said India is the third biggest diamond jewellery consumer market after US and China. However, the consumer buying trend in the tier-II cities like Surat has depicted a negative trend in the New Year with high polished diamond and gold prices.
"Except for Sunday, there were very few buyers at the event. It seems people are reluctant to spend money on jewellery following the volatile prices of gold and polished diamonds," a DTC sight holder, who participated in the event, said.
President, Surat Diamond Association (SDA), Dinesh Navadia said, "Surat is the biggest manufacturer of polished diamonds in the world, but it is sadly not a big consumer market for diamond jewellery."
SGCCI had to cancel the fashion show at the event on Sunday following an accident where a 25-year-old worker succumbed to serious injuries after he fell from the hydraulic platform while fitting a giant hoarding. The deceased was identified as Azhar Siddique of Ichhapore.
January 9th, 2013, 06:21 AM
Task force set up to make India rough diamond trading hub (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Task-force-set-up-to-make-India-rough-diamond-trading-hub/articleshow/17945207.cms)
SURAT: Union ministry for commerce and industry formed a task group on Monday to suggest measures to increase the diamond trade and to make India an international trading hub for rough diamonds.
Official sources said the group has been constituted under chairmanship of the Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) and has five other members. The other members are CMD of Hindustan Diamond Company Private Limited, chairman of Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), president of Bharat Diamond Bourse, chairman of Surat-based Indian Diamond Institute (IDI) and the joint secretary of Export Promotion (Gems and Jewellery). The group will be submitting a report on the task given to it within 30 days.
Besides recommending measures to make India a trading hub of rough diamonds, it will suggest steps for rationalizing taxation regime in sync with international diamond centres, availability of bank finance to the industry, beneficiation of Indian mined diamonds and brand promotion of Indian polished diamonds along with other measures necessary to increase the diamond export.
According to Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council of India (GJEPC) the total gems and jewellery exports from India during April 2012 to September 2012 stood at US$ 19,902.47 million. The domestic jewellery market is pegged at about US$ 16 billion to US$ 18 billion.
Chandrakant Sanghavi, regional chairman of GJEPC said, "The measures suggested by the task group will go a long way in changing the face of the Indian diamond industry. The entire industry is committed to assist the task group in providing all the vital details."
February 5th, 2013, 08:20 AM
Almost all of the world’s stones, be they legally sourced or from war zones, have their histories wiped off in this Indian city.
Read the whole article at http://gulfnews.com/about-gulf-news/al-nisr-portfolio/weekend-review/surat-the-world-s-diamond-capital-1.1140054
February 5th, 2013, 08:40 AM
Good to see Surat in the gulf news :cheers:
February 5th, 2013, 08:54 AM
Almost all of the world’s stones, be they legally sourced or from war zones, have their histories wiped off in this Indian city.
Read the whole article at http://gulfnews.com/about-gulf-news/al-nisr-portfolio/weekend-review/surat-the-world-s-diamond-capital-1.1140054
After reading this article one will come to know why we say CSIA does not want Surat airport to develop just see how much money is involved.
February 6th, 2013, 08:15 AM
Diamantaires pin hopes on Zimbabwe for roughs
SURAT: Diamantaires in world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat are looking at Zimbabwe for the required supplies of rough diamonds during the year as diamond production of mining companies like De Beers has decreased phenomenally.
Two of the largest diamond mines in the world -- Canada's Ekati and Diavik mines -- have exhausted open pit resources and now both are underground mines. The need to convert a mine from an open pit operation to an underground operation typically results in curtailed production given the geology of Kimberlite pipes -the geologic formation of the resource is shaped like a carrot -- and gets narrower at depth.
Ekati's production declined 28 per cent year-over-year in 2012 and Diavik's output is estimated to fall 17 per cent year-over-year in 2013. Three more of the world's largest mines are set to go underground over the next few years as Russia's Udachny mine is expected to be converted to an underground operation in the next two to four years and Botswana's Jwaneng and Orapa mines are expected to follow suit.
Rough diamonds achieved record prices in the summer of 2011, but have since slipped back to 2010 levels on global macroeconomic worries. However, current prices are still higher than historic levels of summer 2008, and supply is estimated to fall short of new demand over the next two decades, which could take prices back to new highs.
The rough diamond demand in India is pegged at $15 billion per annum since the last three years with the increased production following the rising demand of polished diamonds.
According to a recent report published by Zimbabwe government, the country expects diamond production from its Marange fields to double to 16.9 million carats in 2013 as the mining companies' ramp up production in the region where human rights groups have flagged concerns over rights abuses.
The Zimbabwe government through its mining firm Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation (ZMDC) operates five joint venture mines in Marange, which produced 8 million carats in 2012 and generated $685 million in exports.
Diamond analyst Aniruddha Lidbide told TOI, "As the rough diamond production in world's leading mines are on a decline, Zimbabwe is the only hope for Indian diamantaires. It is only Surat, which has the skill to cut and polish the Zimbabwe stones."
February 12th, 2013, 07:08 PM
World Federation of Diamond Bourses suspends Gujarati diamantaire in Dubai (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/World-Federation-of-Diamond-Bourses-suspends-Gujarati-diamantaire-in-Dubai/articleshow/18470815.cms)
SURAT: World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB), the apex body of world diamond bourses, has sent a notice to Bharat Diamond Bourse (BDB) intimating it about the suspension of a Gujarati diamantaire, Rajesh Mavani.
Official sources said Mavani, owner of Dimple Jewels in Dubai, was suspended in accordance with WFDB's Article 2c for not submitting himself to the judgment of the bourse or the arbitration committee.
Mavani, sources said, was operating from Surat and Mumbai until a few years ago. He then shifted his operations to Dubai and was allegedly found involved in some default cases. The WFDB has not disclosed the details about Mavani's case.
WFDB, founded in 1947, was created to provide bourses trading in rough and polished diamonds and precious stones with a common set of trading practices. It is composed of 29 member diamond bourses, including Bharat Diamond Bourse (BDB).
The WFDB, headquartered in Antwerp, acts as a medium for wholesale diamond exchange, trading both polished and rough diamonds. The WFDB consists of independent diamond bourses in major cutting centres such as Tel Aviv, Antwerp, Johannesburg and other cities across the USA, Europe and Asia. The WFDB provides a legal framework and convenes to enact regulations for its members.
"We have received the suspension notice for a Gujarati diamantiare involved in some unfair practice in Dubai. Now, the diamantaire cannot operate in any of the bourses of the world," said a senior BDB officer.
February 12th, 2013, 07:11 PM
Auto Expo-2013 to open on February 15 (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Auto-Expo-2013-to-open-on-February-15/articleshow/18470889.cms)
SURAT: The four-day automobile extravaganza -- Surat International Auto Expo-2013 -- which is being organized jointly by Southern Gujarat Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SGand National Small Industries Corporation Limited (NSIC) will be held at Surat International Exhibition and Convention Centre (SIECC) at Sarsana near here from February 15.
Auto enthusiasts and potential buyers will get an opportunity to witness Rolls Royce 'Ghost', a luxury salon. The 'Ghost' is being displayed for the first time in the diamond city. It is named in honour of the Silver Ghost, a car produced in 1906.
Mehul Desai, chairman of SGCCI's auto committee, told TOI, "This time around the Auto Expo is going to be a unique experience for the participants, exhibitors and the auto enthusiasts. For the first time, we provide a separate display area for commercial vehicles as well."
According to Desai, other attractions include Harley Davidson's Fat Boy customized bike, Mini Cooper car, BMW etc. A car accessory company from Thailand is also participating in the expo.
SGCCI has invited special guests like Dr HP Kumar, CMD, NSIC, Girish Karkera, editor of BBC Topgear India, AP Choudhary, CMD Rashtriya Ispat Nigam Limited, and RC Baid, founding father and mentor of Siddhi Vinayak Logistics Limited.
India lags far behind in the world with regard to the use of cars. There are 700 cars per 1,000 people in the US, China has a ratio of 22 against 1,000 and Sri Lanka and Pakistan 16 and 14 cars per 1,000. But, sadly India has not yet crossed the double digit.
Sources said the diamond city happens to be the world's fourth fastest growing economy having the highest growth rate and highest per family income in the country. In the past two years, the automobile market has jumped to top gear and leading car makers like Audi, BMW, Merc, Nissan etc. have opened their showrooms in the city.
Top brands such as Jaguar and Ferrari, who are supporting the Auto Expo-2013, plan to launch their latest models as well.
Paresh Patel, president, SGCCI, said, "The first auto expo event in 2011 received a good response in the city and thus we decided to make it a biennial event. The Auto Expo-2013 will have categories like two, four and heavy vehicles, automobile furnishing, spare parts, etc."
February 18th, 2013, 08:28 AM
India surpasses Belgium in rough diamond import (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/India-surpasses-Belgium-in-rough-diamond-import/articleshow/18548723.cms)
SURAT: Speculative buying and the rising China threat have shot up the import of rough diamonds from India.
In fact, Indian diamantaires imported more roughs than Belgium in 2012. Despite facing a difficult year, India imported nearly $15 billion worth of rough diamonds during the year, a 3.4 percent increase over the previous year. Against this, Belgium's rough diamond import stood at $12 billion, according to the statistics provided by the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC).
Industry sources said the demand for rough diamonds increased after October 2012 as the diamond manufacturers in Surat responded to the increased sales of polished diamonds. Most of the manufacturers including the big diamond companies took the advantage of low rough diamond prices and indulged in speculative buying, expecting the demand to further pick up in 2013.
While the volume of rough diamond imports increased to 16.5 per cent to 150 million carats in 2012 compared to 2011, the December 2012 import doubled at 18.5 million carats with a stated value of $1.76 billion.
Diamantaires are also getting wary about the China, which has aggressively started acquiring roughs and actively negotiating with African governments to ship them directly to their country. Rough purchases are typically part of a larger package of mineral rights acquired, in lieu of infrastructure facilities provided to that country.
"China is aggressively making inroads in the African nations to acquire rough. Around 60 per cent of the rough diamonds come from the African nations. However, Indian diamantaires are making serious efforts to develop relations with African nations. If China corners the rough diamonds from African nations, then India will have to depend on the Chinese traders for rough supplies, which we don't want," said Rakesh Patel, a rough diamond dealer.
Dinesh Navadia, president, Surat Diamond Association (SDA) said, "More rough diamonds imported into the country means more work for the diamond workers. Even the demand for polished diamonds is increasing in US, China, Hong Kong, UAE and Russia."
February 18th, 2013, 08:31 AM
Diamantaires looking up at Signature-2013 to boost jewellery demand in India (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Diamantaires-looking-up-at-Signature-2013-to-boost-jewellery-demand-in-India/articleshow/18554567.cms)
SURAT : Diamantaires in the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat are eagerly waiting for upcoming sixth edition of gems and jewellery event 'Signature-2013' organised by the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) at Mumbai to drive sales of polished diamonds and diamond jewellery in the domestic market.
Spread over 32,000 sq mtrs with 1083 booths, the four days long Signature-2013 starting from February 22 will see participation from over 550 exhibitors including five international pavilions.
Industry sources said it is the first gems and jewellery event globally that is being organised in 2013. The event will showcase the highest quality, cutting edge designs and
superior craftsmanship by the participants. This is a B2B event where exhibitors will have the opportunity to discover the latest trends, meet with the leading manufacturers and plan their collections and inventories.
"After a buoyant wedding and the festive season demand for orders to the US have been upbeat despite decrease in the amount of rough imports said Vipul Shah, Chairman GJEPC.
"Signature is a great platform where international and national retailers and manufacturers come together to build associations, transact business and forge long-lasting relations that enable business transactions all year around. Hopefully we will see greater quantum of business being transacted during this edition of IIJS 2013."
A DTC sightholder participating in Signature-2013 said, "We have been looking forward to the signature event as it is going to drive the demand for gems and jewellery in the domestic market. The show will set a trend in the jewellery design in the country
February 25th, 2013, 11:03 AM
Ground Report | The Surat fashion matrix (http://www.livemint.com/Leisure/lHdpZ2XbSfUQCWoqCMDNON/Ground-Report--The-Surat-fashion-matrix.html)
How Surat, the world’s fabric-sourcing destination, amplifies designer trends into affordable clothing for the domestic market
Surat is a small city with a big story. It is an old city that has been continually reinventing itself and is uniquely connected to the outside world. It’s perhaps no surprise, therefore, that a Giorgio Armani yarn about the Italian fashion guru’s obsessive practice of approving every last detail to do with his brand, springs up over chai at an export trader’s office.
Shree Vallabh International, three flights up a paan-stained staircase in a textile market where lifts overflow with synthetic textile yardage, isn’t the place you would normally expect chatter about Armani.
The reason Vishal Arora, chief fabric sourcing head of Triburg, a Gurgaon-based textile export firm, is privy to anecdotes that usually come up at fashion weeks is because he has sourced mill-made fabrics for Armani ready-to-wear lines for several years. “Triburg also sources for American brands such as Kenneth Cole, Nordstrom, Calvin Klein and American Eagle Outfitters from Surat,” says Arora, on a business trip to Vallabh International, one of the top 5% companies of Surat where “fashion fabrics” are created for the export market. Ninety-five per cent of the mills sell to the domestic market, the remaining 5% cater to exports.
Founded by Vrajesh Punjabi in 2002, Vallabh International is a swanky space you enter after removing your shoes and placing them in a designated closet outside. Furniture in soft brown leather is flanked by stainless steel art pieces, a modern gym, the latest Apple hardware and a CCTV network. For anyone who visits stores like Zara, H&M, Marks & Spencer or Mango, or keeps up with fashion magazines, the sample room brings on a strong sense of déjà vu. Here, mill-made and digitally printed polyesters, georgettes, satin and crepe, from dull to grainy, soft, shiny or matte, pleated fabrics, sequinned material in gold and powdery shades of Schiffli-embroidered fabric transport you back to your favourite high street showroom. These are materials you may have seen, even bought, as shirts or palazzos, tops or trousers, soft jackets or stoles.
“There is a 360-degree turn in the kind of fashion fabrics we now create compared to a few years back,” says Punjabi. He deals with sourcing representatives of fashion brands and creates textile samples for ready-to-wear collections based on seasonal forecasts. “Surat can compete with China in variety and quality of synthetic textiles, we only lag behind in quantity,” says Punjabi. The spurt in orders has made Vallabh International push up production. http://www.livemint.com/r/LiveMint/Period1/2013/02/23/Photos/surat2--330x220.jpg
Surat, an industrial city on the banks of the Tapti river in south Gujarat, celebrated for its diamond industry, as India’s oldest hub for man-made textiles and as the biggest producer of zari in the world, is now on a fashion high. This is also the headquarters of Garden Vareli, one of India’s better-known textile mills, which hosted fashion shows in Mumbai in the 1980s. Today, in an unusual turnaround, Surat amplifies designer trends in women’s wear for the mass market, dressing up entire regions in India. Polyester bling sold in the bazaars of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka is from Surat. Fabrics embroidered with stones, foiled with metallic zari, velvet bordered saris, Anarkali sets made of net and lace and more.
Read the whole story at:http://www.livemint.com/Leisure/lHdpZ2XbSfUQCWoqCMDNON/Ground-Report--The-Surat-fashion-matrix.html
March 6th, 2013, 02:17 PM
Surat, the world's diamond polishing hub, has never seen a heist of the kind Brussels saw recently. The entire industry works on a system of trust that is nearly inviolable.
While thieves were busy looting diamonds worth Rs 250 crore from inside the high security zone of the Brussels airport on February 19, it was business as usual in the world's biggest diamond cutting centre - Surat.
It is believed that at least 90 per cent of the stolen sparklers were meant for polishing units in Surat. These units, known for putting the shine on nine out of 10 diamonds in the world, enjoy an annual turnover pegged at Rs 80,000 crore.
Yet, Surat has never seen a Brussels-type heist. The secret perhaps lies in its unbelievably simple trade system founded entirely on trust. It is a system that could give corporate lawyers and executives a nightmare because of its informal nature, but it works perfectly well for Surat's businessmen. The Brussels incident has rattled some of Surat's top diamond merchants into rethinking its loose security system . But it is unlikely that this will lead to any alterations in how crores change hands in this city. Here is why.
The two diamond markets at Varachha and Mahidharpura in Surat are abuzz with tens of hundreds of diamond manufacturers and merchants. From 10 am to 6:30 pm, polished and rough diamonds worth over Rs 400 crore are traded every day. Effectively then, each man walking these streets is a crorepati. Except for the CCTV cameras installed inside the offices of some diamond merchants , there are no traces of organized security in these localities.
Around 50 per cent of the diamonds that reach the markets at Varachha and Mahidharpura land up in safe deposit vaults. There are a total of 15 vaults in both the markets where Rs 700 crore worth of diamonds are stored. If a dealer cheats, he is simply kicked out of the circle forever and his debt is shifted to other family members.
Surat has more than 3,500 large and small diamond manufacturing units employing around 4.5 lakh workers. Like most of the complexes housing diamond manufacturing units, the Diamond World Towers and the Princess Towers in Varachha's Mini Bazaar have 'light security' , a euphemism given that you can only see a few baton-wielding guards who spend most of their time asking people to park their vehicles properly.
March 8th, 2013, 03:31 PM
SURAT: Textile entrepreneurs in country's biggest man-made fabric industry in Surat are all set to try manufacturing biodegradable and eco-friendly technical textile products using natural banana fibre.
The Man-Made Textile Research Association (MANTRA) has successfully prepared fabrics using banana fibre on powerloom and processed them into dyed, printed and finished products. They were then subjected to coating and lamination and made into technical textile products.
Some of the technical textile products produced from banana fibre include a flame retardant curtain fabric, a water repellent and breathable shoe fabric, home furnishing fabric, banana fibre carpet and floor mat.
Sources said MANTRA and Navsari Agriculture University (NAU) have jointly decided to reach out to the banana growers of south Gujarat, who can supply fibre to the local textile industrialists.
Banana production has been on the rise, with Gujarat now occupying the fifth place among all states in the country. South Gujarat alone accounts for 54 per cent of total production of banana in the state. After harvest, removing banana tree was a big problem. The removal of pseudo stem from the field to the disposal site involved cost of labour and transportation.
Now, the fibre is extracted from pseudo stem by Raspador machine. This would help the net income of a farmer to touch Rs 23,000 per hectare. It has the potential to generate rural employment by making the fibre available to the textile and the paper industry.
President, MANTRA, Arun Jariwala told TOI, "We recently organized a workshop on the usefulness of banana fibre fabrics with a view to bring farmers and textile industrialists closer. There has been a lot of research going on at MANTRA for producing biodegradable technical textile products."
He said MANTRA has proposed to set up a pilot project for non-woven technical textiles and is setting up converter machines to produce technical textile products from woven and non-woven fabrics at Karanj textile park. Gujarat government has sanctioned Rs 10 crore for setting up machinery for non-woven technical textiles and a further demand of Rs 20 crore has been put forth before the industries department for converter machines.
Surat set to make textile products using banana fibre (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Surat-set-to-make-textile-products-using-banana-fibre/articleshow/18860159.cms)
March 23rd, 2013, 04:37 PM
SURAT: Soon, around 13 diamond cutting and polishing centres in Gujarat, including Surat, will be equipped with state-of-the-art Common Facility Centres (CFCs). These CFCs will facilitate small and medium diamond manufacturers to make use of modern technology and increase their productivity.
Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) and Indian Diamond Institute (IDI) have jointly started preparing a detailed project report (DPR) for setting up CFCs in 13 centres across the state. The project has been sanctioned by central government under the 12th Five Year Plan at the total cost of Rs 50 crore.
Small and medium diamond manufacturers in 13 centres like Surat, Navsari, Ahmedabad, Amreli, Bhavnagar, Botad, Visnagar, Junagadh, Jasdan and Deesa will be able to use modern technology and equipment at CFCs.
Gujarat processes Rs 80,000 crore worth of polished diamonds per annum. Surat contributes 80 per cent of diamond manufacturing, while the rest is done in other centres.
In the past few years, many small diamond manufacturers and workers have shifted to their villages in Saurashtra, including Bhavnagar and Amreli, where they have set up small units following round-the-clock supply of electricity under the state government's Jyotirgram scheme.
Industry sources said diamond manufacturers in centres other than Surat are lagging behind when it comes to processing diamonds using hi-tech. Small players are not in position to invest lakhs of rupees for installing modern technology for diamond polishing and jewellery making.
"Diamond units operating in small centres across the state are using old and outdated technology, which was used in Surat 15 years ago. The productivity and quality of work is compromised. Through the common facility centres we want to provide a platform to diamond manufacturers to make use of modern technology and increase their productivity at par with global standards," executive director, GJEPC, Sabhyasachi Ray said.
Ray added, "The common facility centres will provide all the facilities to small diamond manufacturers such as planning of rough diamonds, laser marking, computer-aided design (CAD) for jewellery making etc. on job work basis."
Small diamantaires to be equipped with latest tech (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Small-diamantaires-to-be-equipped-with-latest-tech/articleshow/19115168.cms)
March 23rd, 2013, 04:39 PM
SURAT: Indian diamond industry will get more supply of rough diamonds till 2015 with De Beers, the world's biggest diamond mining company, adding a few more Indian clients. Its four out of total five new clients for the contract period of 2013-2015 are diamond companies based in Surat and Mumbai, industry sources said.
Head of beneficiation, De Beers group sightholder sales, Nigel Simson told TOI in an email reply, "The new supply period begins on March 31, 2013, and in the meantime we will need to finalize some standard discussions with our five new sightholders to ensure full compliance of our best practice principles (BPP). On March 31, we will have an updated sightholder directory, which will have introduction, contacts and key information on each of the new sightholders."
In the contract period from 2012-2013, about 33 out of the total 75 clients-supplier of choice (SoC) - of De Beers selected worldwide are Indian companies. With the addition of four Indian sightholders, the total number of India sightholders has gone up to 37. The DTC (De Beers diamond trading company), which has average annual rough diamond sales worth $5.5 billion, organizes about 10 sales sight every year for its clients. The diamond boxes of various sizes and colours are displayed at the London headquarters of DTC and the clients have to express their interest for the specific stock requirement.
As about 37 clients of DTC are Indians, about 55 per cent of the stock to be put up for sale throughout the year is expected to come to India-about $2.8 billion worth of goods. While the DTC sightholder companies would keep a certain amount of goods for processing and value addition, rest of the goods would be sold in the open market to the small and medium unit owners on premium price.
India is by far the largest diamond cutting centre and largest customer of rough diamonds, responsible for 72 per cent of the worldwide consumption-the annual rough diamond demand is pegged at $11 billion. China and Israel are distant second and third respectively, with only 11 per cent and 7 per cent of global rough consumption, respectively.
The rush for rough diamonds in India has already started as the consumer demand for diamond jewellery is increasing from India, the U.S and China in the backdrop of dwindling rough diamond supplies. Diamond miners in the world are struggling to keep pace with growing consumption in emerging economies as older mines are exhausted and producers lack new discoveries. Prices of rough, or unpolished, diamonds have risen as much as 30 per cent from a six-year low in early 2009 as jewellery sales collapsed.
A DTC sigtholder said, "The ties of Indian diamond companies with De Beers as its clients has become more stronger with the addition of four new companies from Surat and Mumbai.
Four out of five new clients of De Beers are Indians (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Four-out-of-five-new-clients-of-De-Beers-are-Indians/articleshow/19135457.cms)
April 10th, 2013, 11:19 PM
SURAT: Indian diamond companies have proven their prominence in the global rough diamond supply chain, after the world's biggest diamond mining company added four clients from India, out of the total five.
De Beers has announced the names of the new sight-holders for the contract period, which runs until 2015, including Asian Star Company, H Dipak, HVK International, KP Sanghavi and Sons and the Hong Kong-based Wing Hang company.
Industry sources said that all the four companies-two of them headquartered at Mumba-have their trading and diamond manufacturing operations in Surat and Mumbai.
In the contract period from 2012-2013, about 33 out of the total 75 clients-supplier of choice (SoC)- De Beers selected worldwide are Indian companies. With the addition of four Indian sightholders, the total number of India sightholders has gone up to 37.
The DTC, which has average annual rough diamond sales worth $5.5 billion, organises about 10 sales sights every year, for its clients. Diamond boxes of various sizes and colours are displayed at the London headquarter of DTC and that the clients have to express their interest for the specific stock requirement.
As about 37 clients of DTC are Indians, about 55 per cent of the stock to be put up for sale throughout the year is expected to come to India; about $2.8 billion worth of goods.
While the DTC sightholder companies would keep a certain amount of goods for processing and value addition, rest of the goods would be sold in the open market to the small and medium unit owners on premium price.
De Beers announce the names of its four new clients from India (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/business/india-business/De-Beers-announce-the-names-of-its-four-new-clients-from-India/articleshow/19477058.cms?)
April 13th, 2013, 01:22 AM
Diamond export up 28% in Feb, revives industry hopes (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/surat/Diamond-export-up-28-in-Feb-revives-industrys-hopes/articleshow/19521766.cms)
Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) in its statistical data has shown the export of polished diamonds to have increased by 28 per cent in February 2013. Compared to $1.4 billion worth of polished diamond export in February 2012, India exported $1.84 billion worth of polished diamonds in February 2013.
A senior executive of GJEPC said, "Export of cut and polished diamonds started falling month-wise after the imposition of 2 per cent of import duty on the polished diamonds. But, February 2013 has given a new ray of hope to the industry as the export of polished diamonds has actually increased by 28 per cent. It means the industry is on the track of recovery and round-tripping of diamonds has stopped completely."
Official sources said the main export markets for the cut and polished diamonds were Hong Kong, the US, UAE, Israel and Belgium.
On the import front, Indian diamantaires imported about 13.48 million carats of rough diamonds between April 2012 and February 2013, an increase of 16 per cent compared to 11.66 million carats during the same period in the previous year.
Sabhyasachi Ray, executive director, GJEPC told TOI, "It seems the base effect of 2 per cent import duty on polished diamonds witnessed in the industry since January 2012, has actually gone The bad days for the industry are over as the export of diamonds in February 2013 has increased phenomenally."
A DTC sightholder said, "The year 2013 seems promising for the Indian diamond industry.
Demand has started coming in from the US, the UK, Japan and China. India's polished diamond export is expected to cross $21 billion in 2013-14."
The export of cut and polished diamonds between April 2012 and February 2013 had seen a sharp decline of 29 per cent compared to the same period in the previous year.
April 18th, 2013, 04:48 AM
SURAT: When it comes to the sparkling diamonds, Surat finds a special mention in the global diamond industry as being the world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre. But few know about the history of the diamond industry in the city and also about the stages of diamond production. But, now the residents as well as the visitors from across the country and abroad will have an opportunity to get a detailed know-how on the Rs 80,000 crore diamond industry. Thanks to the joint efforts of the Surat Municipal Corporation (SMC) and the Indian Diamond Institute (IDI), a first-of-its-kind 'Diamond Gallery' spread on 833 square metres area has been established at the SMC-run Science Centre at City Light that will take the visitors through the one- and-half-hour long journey into the world of diamonds.
Bhamini Mahida, chief curator, Science Centre, told TOI, "There is a unique character named 'Hira Kaka', a narrator, who takes the visitors through more than an hour-long journey in the world of diamonds at the eight audio-visual rooms. The visitors get a complete know-how on diamonds, right from its mining to its processing and marketing including jewellery."
On the display are replicas of some of the world-famous diamonds in the history like the Kohinoor, Culinan, Hope diamond, the Great Moghul, Green Dreseden, etc. Also, there is a separate gallery displaying the state-of-the-art diamond machinery and equipments used by the industry in Surat and world-wide.
"There are models of marine diamond mining and the open-pit diamond mining, which explains in detail how the diamonds are mined deep under the sea and the earth's core. The IDI was given a turn-key contract and that we have also received immense support from the industry leaders," said Mahida.
Dinesh Navadia, president, Surat Diamond Association (SDA) told TOI, "Nowhere in the world one could find such a diamond gallery. It would be easy for us to take the visiting delegations from abroad and across the country to the diamond gallery to understand the diamonds from mines to market."
May 18th, 2013, 01:28 PM
Bangladesh woes bring hope for Surat synthetic textile industry
While on one hand the recent recent incidents of fire at and collapse of factory buildings in the garment exporters' hub of Bangladesh might have led to international brands expressing doubts of continuing business, the Surat-based synthetic textile industry is hopeful of increased business.
According to Devkishan Manghani, president of Federation of Surat Textile Traders Association (FOSTTA), about 7-8 per cent of 30 million metres per day of synthetic fabric from Surat, especially polyester is shipped to West Bengal from where 60-70 per cent used to be exported to Bangladesh for garment conversion.
"The share used to go as high as 15 per cent on festive days such as Durga Puja and Eid. However, we were facing tough competition from China and Taiwan, among other countries. However, now with international orders slowing down in Bangladesh, even the Indian orders are staying with the country, thereby easing the competition pressure. In the coming days we hope to garner better returns from fabric sales to garmenters within the country," said Manghani, adding that enquiries from Indian garmenters have increased since few days.
However, industry experts believe there is still some time before the actual result could be tangibly seen.
"There is some shift in orders but it is still miniscule. Fabrics of only polyester and denim from India go to Bangladesh for conversion. Even there, the Surat-based industry is up against giants like China, Taiwan, Vietnam and other countries. Hence, it is yet to be seen how much shift will be there," said Sanjay Jain, president of Kolkata Association of Garment.
Apart from dispatching synthetic fabrics to garment manufacturing regions, the Surat-based industry also offers finished goods like sarees and dress materials.
However, till recently the demand for such fabrics by garment manufacturers was slow for the Surat industry.
Meanwhile, according to Manghani, with orders for Durga Puja and Ramadan set to come up in near future, orders could rise from Indian garment converters soon.