Recently released figures from the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC) showed that Belgium’s polished diamond exports decreased 4.5 percent in January.
By value, exports totaled $772 million in January compared to $808 million a year previously. By volume, exports declined from 432,000 carats in January 2015 to 398,000 carats in January 2016 – an 8-percent decrease.
The value of exports to the US was $244 million, a slight dip of 0.5 percent. The volume of exports to the US increased 10 percent – to 52,000 carats. Exports to Hong Kong by value marginally increased 0.6 percent to $137.5 million, while exports by volume ballooned 30.5 percent to 79,000 carats. Exports of polished diamonds to Israel suffered an 8-percent decline, totaling $99.3 million.
Total polished imports to Belgium declined 11.5 percent by value and 13 percent by volume. In January 2016, total imports by value were $985 million compared to $1.11 billion a year previously. By volume on a year-over-year basis, imports of polished diamonds in January declined from 622, 000 carats to 542,000 carats.
Rough exports by value fell 6.7 percent to $792 million compared to $849 million a year previously. However, rough exports by volume increased 30 percent to 8.76 million carats compared to 6.72 million in January 2015.
Rough imports by value decreased 13 percent to $839 million and dropped 16 percent by volume to 5.7 million carats.
These latest figures come less than a month after the AWDC published Belgium’s 2015 polished diamond results, showing a 9-percent decrease amid challenging global conditions.