Recently released figures from the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC) showed that the signs of recovery that were visible in prices and demand for rough diamonds in February, fluctuated somewhat in March.
During March, Antwerp exported 10.04 million carats of diamonds – a 5.43-percent increase compared to the 9.5 million carats exported in March 2015. Over the first quarter in 2016, 31.1 million carats of rough diamonds were exported – a 21-percent increase over the same period a year previously. Despite the increase by volume, rough exports by value in March were down 14.1 percent, and also showed a 0.68-percent decrease in the first quarter.
Antwerp’s March polished diamond figures showed a year-over-year decline. By value, polished diamond exports fell 5.87 percent to $1.16 billion compared to $1.23 billion in March 2015. In the first quarter, polished exports by volume fell 11.37 percent to 1.503 million carats compared to 1.696 million over the same period in 2015. Exports by value in the first quarter dropped to $3.529 billion compared to $3.808 billion in the first quarter of 2015 – a 7.3-percent decrease.
Polished diamond imports declined in March; 13.43 percent by value and 20.84 percent by volume. Over the first quarter of 2016 polished imports by value declined to $3.436 billion compared to $3.927 billion in the same period a year previous – 12.5-percent decline. By volume, imports declined 17 percent in the first quarter from more than 2 million carats in 2015 to 1.67 million in 2016.
Rough diamond imports in March decreased 30 percent by value and 22.82 percent by volume. In the first quarter, imports of rough rose slightly by 3.43 percent to 25.4 million carats. However, imports by value declined 7 percent to $3.04 billion.