Recently the AWDC said, the diamond trade around the world is under duress. Antwerp, the most important international trade center, did not escape the year unscathed, but was the best performer. This past year, 48.3 billion USD worth of diamonds were imported to and exported from Antwerp. While this represents a decline of nearly 18%, competitors such as India and Israel endured much steeper declines.
As the diamond industry rises and falls on the waves of the global economy, the economic slowdown in the BRIC countries – particularly China, the second largest market for polished diamonds after the United States – had a huge impact on the diamond trade.
While the dramatic downturn in the diamond industry resulted in a slight decline in prices for rough diamonds for the first time in decades, soft prices for polished diamonds made it increasingly difficult for diamond traders to turn a profit. As a result, the average profit margins for wholesalers were between 0.11% and 0.37%, the same as in 2014.
Additionally, the banking and sovereign debt crises led to drastic changes in the availability of bank lending to businesses. As a result, many industries found it difficult to obtain financing. For diamantaires, this means that they had fewer resources available for purchasing rough diamonds, which has an impact on the global trade.
It was a difficult year for the diamond industry worldwide. But Antwerp held its own and managed to secure its world-leading position thanks to its heritage, knowledge and courage to adjust and adopt new technologies. Antwerp did not become the world leader in the industry by shrinking from adversity but by facing it head-on. And that is exactly how we will face these challenges again. AWDC said in its report.