Work hard and you will find success

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Global diamond trade leaders hold meeting with Panama's president

19 october 2009

A delegation of diamond industry leaders from around the world met Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli. During the meeting, the group discussed with the president the need for Panama to pass laws enabling diamond trade and tax exemptions, Antwerpfacetsonline reported.
The meeting was attended by World Diamond Council Chairman Eli Izhakoff, Diamond Dealers Club of New York (NYDDC) President Moshe Mosbacher, NYDDC Managing Director Martin Hochbaum; president of the Panama Diamond Exchange Erez Akerman, Israel Diamond Institute Managing Director Eli Avidar and Israeli Ambassador to Panama Yoad Magen.
President Martinelli promised that the Panamanian government would take the needed legislative measures to create a bureaucracy-free diamond trade.
Avidar told Martinelli that the diamond trade in South America is not organized and in certain cases problematic. He said there must be a base from which the diamond business can expand its activities into South America and that the country acting as a base for operations have a strict rule of law and a stable government. 
"We are looking for the South American equivalent of Hong Kong," Avidar said.
Other issues raised at the meeting included the need for Panama to re-join the Kimberley Process, the need to pass legislation for forming a free-trade zone for the Panama Diamond Exchange and a tax exemption for diamond exports from Panama to South America.