India’s First Online Gems and Jewellery Industry Portal Catering to B2B Segment
puja_bansal_x.jpgBelonging to a jewellery family and being a certified diamond grader as well, Puja Bansal has been actively involved in manufacturing, retailing, and designing; and has showcased her expertise in several events and fashion shows in India and international fashion arena. Launching herself in the year 1998 as a brand under Khandelwal Jewellers Ltd (KJL), Delhi, Puja’s keen interest in jewellery and her passion for designing led her to conceptualize MYHEERA.COM, a unique online platform, presenting itself as a virtual world of a globally connected business to business stage for the gems and jewelry industry. In this interview with Rough & Polished, Puja talks about her ‘one-of-a-kind’ online B2B portal dedicated to the gem and jewellery industry, serving all the options in a single platform.

The downturn should stop by the middle of next year - Maxim Shkadov
maxim_shkadov_x2.jpgThe Production Corporation of Kristall operating in Smolensk is the major diamond cutting enterprise in Russia established in 1963. It was here that a diamond cutting technique now known worldwide under the brand of Russian Cut was born, when this country introduced a processing standard for cutting and polishing diamonds in 1977 with extremely stringent requirements. The aim of the Russian Cut is the icy mathematical ideal setting fire and brilliance free in a diamond. This kind of experience accumulated over half a century makes Smolensk’s Kristall feel confident in the top segment of the global diamond market in spite of the difficulties currently experienced by the industry. In his interview to Rough&Polished Maxim Shkadov, CEO of Kristall tells about his company’s performance and comments on the situation in the diamond market.

Yoram Dvash: Israel's Next Big Diamond Project
yoram_dvash_x.jpgAs Chairman of the Israel Diamond Exchange's (IDE) Industry Committee for the past two years, Yoram Dvash has played a leading role in several initiatives. He was one of the major forces behind the creation of a modern manufacturing plant near the IDE complex that was officially opened earlier this year. Now, he is leading the charge for the establishment of another manufacturing center for Israeli diamantaires – this one for the production of diamonds of 10 carats and larger. He tells Rough & Polished about the importance that he, IDE President Shmuel Schnitzer and the IDE's board attach to bringing manufacturing back to Israel.

Consolidation of all Industry Associations is the Only Way for Jewelry Community to Keep the Situation under Control
eduard_utkin_x.jpgOn October 2, 2015, Moscow hosted the Third International Economic Jewelry Forum held under the slogan "New Realities, New Challenges, New Strategy in a Changing Global Marketplace". The gathering discussed the problems facing the jewelry industry, new economic challenges and opportunities of doing jewelry business, as well as the way out of the current crisis and how to ensure dynamic stability of the jewelry industry in the prevailing economic realities. The event was organized with the support of Russia’s Ministry of Finance, Gokhran, Assay Chamber, ALROSA, Russian Jewellery Trade Club and RESTEC JUNWEX media holding. Eduard Utkin, General Manager of the Russian Jewelers Guild shared his view of the results achieved at the Forum in his interview to Rough & Polished.


Russian Ministry of Finance recommends prolongation of ALROSA's Supervisory Board mandate
(Finmarket.ru) - The Russian Ministry of Finance recommended to prolong the mandate of the current Supervisory Board of ALROSA for the next fiscal year, according to the Federal Property Agency website.

De Beers shareholders to meet on Nov. 26 to discuss diamond prices
De Beers shareholders will meet November 26 to discuss diamond prices, Botswana Minerals, Energy and Water Resources Minister Onkokame Kitso Mokaila said.

Stellar Diamonds narrows FY losses to £3.05m
Stellar Diamonds said it narrowed its year to June losses to £3.05 million from £4.1million a year earlier.

India as a world diamond centre


From ancient times to the present day

Since ancient times, India has been a historical center of diamonds. Several thousand years ago people there were able to mine diamonds and used them to make jewelry. Merchants from many countries exchanged goods and gold for Indian diamonds. Moreover, in the Indian treatise Arthashastra (literally “the doctrine of wealth”) by Kautilya there is a mention of duties imposed on diamonds, which indicates the importance of diamond trade among other goods.

The first diamonds were found and then mined in India more than 1,000 years BC. It is known that Alexander of Macedon brought the first diamond to Europe from India in 327 BC. Almost two thousand years, until the end of the 19th century (1896), India was the only country in the world where diamonds were mined. The diamond mines of Golconda near the modern city of Hyderabad are renowned around the world for the most famous diamonds in history found there.

Diamond cutting also originated in India, where diamonds were skillfully cut and polished by Indian craftsmen since the beginning of the 16th century. Not surprisingly, the evaluation of diamonds and gems also appeared there. Diamonds in India were evaluated similar to the division of society into castes (varnas): Brahmans - transparent colorless diamonds, Kshatriyas – diamonds with a reddish hue, Vaisyas - diamonds with a greenish or yellow hue, and finally Shudras - gray or dark color diamonds. Varna in Sanskrit means quality, color, category.

Production of and trade in diamonds in India

In India, the Madhya Pradesh state has a primary diamond deposit (Majhgawan) and a few placers, the total reserves of which are estimated at 2.6 million carats. Their diamond output is insignificant (Table 1, Fig. 1).

India is the largest consumer of rough diamonds in the world. At the same time, as it was mentioned above, its diamond output is negligible (Table 2).

Table 1

Diamond mining in India, 2006-2011

According to the Kimberley Process

Table 2

Import and export of diamonds in India, 2006-2011

According to the Kimberley Process

India - the world's largest diamond cutting center

India is the undisputed global leader in the polished diamond market: it holds a 60% market share by value, 80% by volume and 92% by the number of stones. India’s diamond and jewelry business involves about 1.3 million workers engaged in 25,000 enterprises.

Today the country produces 8 out of every 10 polished diamonds in the world. If earlier it was mainly the so-called "Indian goods" - small diamonds, now there is a trend to increase the range of processed diamonds including stones of two carats and above.

India is engaged in intensive construction of new factories with modern equipment, where laser diamond processing and computer diamond marking are being brought to perfection.

India’s diamond cutting industry is concentrated in the west of the country in Mumbai, Surat and Ahmedabad. The entire diamond business is concentrated and controlled by 2,500 families who practice Jainism and are closely linked by ties of kinship. This community, adding up to 0.5% of India’s population, plays an important role in trade and finance.


Fig. 1. Diamond industry of India

India is confidently in the first place as the world's largest producer of polished diamonds. The number of employees in Indian diamond cutting companies is about one million people.

The diamond cutting industry in India is a highly organized sector with a hierarchical structure. At the top of the "management pyramid" is the Indian Gems and Jewelry Export Promotion Council. The aim of the Council is to coordinate the interests of the state and industry, as well as to assist in promoting Indian jewelry industry goods on the world market.

The second tier is occupied by major private import-export companies. All of them are engaged in cutting, except for two. MMTS – the state-owned export-import company trading in minerals. The second one, Hindustan Diamond Company Private Limited (HDCPL), is a joint venture of the Ministry of Trade and Industry of India and De Beers Group, which hold equal stakes in the company. HDCPL was established in 1978 and is one of the leading agents in rough diamond trade in India. HDCPL is a DTC sightholder and supplier of diamonds to the Indian diamond industry, mainly to small and medium factories.

The third tier consists of small and medium-size enterprises in the formal sector of the industry. They are working under contracts with major importers of rough. Their main distinction is that they are highly specialized depending on the nature of processed products.

The fourth tier may include small-scale enterprises of the informal sector operating within a system of subcontracts and specialized in processing very small diamonds. Actually, they source their rough in the secondary market.

Jewelry production in India

India's jewelry industry is export oriented. Jewelry companies in India are highly organized operations using all the modern technologies of management with due account for local conditions. Even small factories (25-50 persons) in this sector have modern equipment.

India’s jewelry industry is mainly producing jewelry pieces of Western design. Still they leave a place for exclusive and expensive products made in the traditional Indian manner.

Jewelry manufacturers use the most up-to-date equipment, casting techniques and elements of computer design.

The Government of India and Gems and Jewelry Export Promotion Council contribute their efforts to win leading positions not only in diamond cutting, but also in manufacturing and exporting jewelry. It was the government’s policy which facilitated high production and export performance being aimed at liberalizing the jewelry sector and domestic market of precious metals and stones.

India’s prospects to preserve leadership in the global diamond business

The high competitiveness of the diamond industry in India is defined by the following factors:

1. Historical traditions and a large number of people employed in the diamond business with a relatively low wages, as well as introduction of modern techniques and equipment making it possible to develop the diamond and jewelry industries in a dynamic way.

2. State protectionism practiced to maintain import and export of goods and virtual absence of state control over the circulation of diamonds and jewelry.

3. High rates of GDP growth in India, as well as high rates of growth in certain branches of India’s industry contributing to higher living standards and thus to an increase in domestic demand and consumption of jewelry and diamonds, which is a huge potential for further development in a country with a population of over one billion people.

Yuri Danilov, Ph. D., Director of the Department of Regional Subsoil Management Economics, Institute for Regional Economics of the North at Ammosov North-Eastern Federal University


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