- During the Antwerp Diamond Experience this week, the ties between the Chinese and Antwerp diamond sector were strengthened.
- During the event, the importance of Antwerp as main diamond centre in the world was verified.
At the start of this week, about twenty Asian diamond trades, invited by the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWCD), visited Antwerp for the sixth Antwerp Diamond Experience. Previous editions already focused on the United States, Turkey, Kuwait and Bahrein.
Trust is primordial
The goal of this gathering was to strengthen the network between the main Chinese diamond companies and the Antwerp diamond industry. In the diamond industry, trust is primordial. Invoices are used, but often without a contract. Holding such conferences are thus organised to build this important trust. Every year there are five diamond bourses where the diamond industry has the chance to meet each other and to maintain their contacts. Many regard this as too few, so every opportunity to showcase and discuss new collections is seized with both hands by the tradesmen.
21 Chinese jewellers were present, who represented approximately 8.000 local retailers. Jessica Cia, the executive director from Guangzhou, had this to say: “we employ, depending on demand, between 100 and 200 people. We deliver our products to Disneyland, among others, and recently made gifts for the Belgian trade delegation that visited China. Antwerp is the main diamond centre in the world. We thus consider it very important to be present at this event.”
Antwerp World Diamond Centre organised the event to a tee
The Antwerp World Diamond Centre promotes the interests of the Belgian diamond sector and by organising events like this, they want to strengthen the position of Antwerp as main diamond centre in the world and demonstrate the importance of investment diamonds. The Antwerp diamond sector has the most efficient working practice worldwide: they offer, for example, custom services. The highlight of the event was a sort of organised ‘speed dating’. Jewellers had a 10 minute chance to familiarise themselves with a string of diamond companies.
Antwerp exports yearly for approximately 4 billion euros cut diamonds to Hong Kong and China. Recently, a slight decrease can be identified, because of the growth deceleration in the Chinese economy. In India, too, times are tough for diamond export. The government is implementing harsh actions against illegal diamond trade and there is less cash available for the purchasing of diamonds.
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