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Diamond industry in Surat hit by China slowdown

Surat, Sept.10 : The slowdown in Chinese economy has adversely affected the diamond industry in India.

As per data issued by Gem and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), diamond export from Surat, which by some estimates polishes about 80 percent of the world’s diamonds to China, has declined ever since financial crisis hit the neighbouring country.

“Due to the crisis in China, the diamond jewellery business has been adversely affected. The polish demand from China in Indian markets has also been affected due to this,” said Dineshbhai Navadiya, the regional chairman of GJEPC.

More than 5,000 Surat polishers have lost their jobs since June and thousands more could be left without work as the Chinese consumers pull back from luxury purchases, leaving jewellers with stocks of unsold jewellery and gems.

Polishers say the Chinese jewellers have defaulted on deals worth millions of dollars.

Navadiya opined that the United States could benefit in diamond business in the present scenario.

“In diamond industry, one who imports in terms of dollars and sells in terms of rupees would face problems and may have to incur losses too,” he said.

Nearly half a dozen large diamond companies in the city have closed down.

Surat polishes cheaper diamonds of less than a carat, but is also known for solitaires – single stones – popular with the Chinese buyers. (ANI)