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Dvash Calls on Industry to ‘Think Outside The Box’ at Int’l Diamond Week in Israel

Feb 17, 2016 3:07 AM   By Rapaport News
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RAPAPORT... The sixth edition of the International Diamond Week launched at the Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) in Ramat Gan February 15, with new bourse president Yoram Dvash signing a pact with a Turkish jewelry body to increase cooperation between the respective industries.

Dvash and Norayr Isler, chairman of the Istanbul Chamber of Jewelry, signed a memorandum of understanding February 15.

“We clearly share the desire to strengthen the relationship between the parties and increase commercial transactions between our mutual members," Dvash said. "We therefore have agreed to cooperate on mutual activities, encourage our members to participate in the partners' respective industry shows and too meet regularly to discuss mutual business opportunities, with an aim to reinforce the commercial relationship and to facilitate trade between both countries' industries.

Dvash opened the winter edition of the International Diamond Week amid leading industry figures, including former IDE president Shmuel Schnitzer, Gaetano Cavalieri, president of CIBJO - The World Jewellery Confederation, and renowned British designer Stephen Webster. Webster received the Israel Diamond Exchange Appreciation Award for his contribution to the jewelry industry.

“Every opportunity to witness a packed rough trading hall in the Israel Diamond Exchange is most welcome," Dvash said. “We are all in the same boat. I call on everyone to think outside the box. This is what we do in the Israel Diamond Exchange and this is what we must all do in our private diamond businesses.”

The Israel diamond trade took a hit in 2015 as exports of polished gems from the country slumped 20 percent and polished exports to the U.S., Israel’s biggest trading partner, diving 16 percent.

The opening day also saw the launch of the Israel Diamond Jewelry Association (IDJ), which is aimed at “winning the heart of the consumer,” according to a statement February 16. A special exhibition showcasing diamond jewelry produced by companies within the Israel Diamond Exchange was on display on the trading floor.

Dvash, Cavalieri and Schnitzer, chairman of the Israel Diamond Institute and honorary president of the IDE, signed a statement of purpose for the IDJ that cited the significance of the diamond jewelry field as an integral part of the Israeli diamond industry and acknowledged the role of jewelers expanding the consumer market for diamonds.

Global consumer demand for diamond jewelry is expected to have declined marginally in U.S. dollar terms in 2015 amid economic slowdown in China, according to De Beers preliminary results report February 16. Still, demand for diamond jewelry by Chinese consumers was stable but demand in India contracted in local currency terms.

Dvash said the initiative "reflects our recognition of the need to shorten the distance between diamond dealers and diamond jewelry manufacturers. We have to find the optimum way to get us closer to the end consumer.”

Schnitzer, who is also an honorary president of the IDE, speaking to Rapaport News, noted the large turnout from several countries – including the U.S., India and Turkey – and said many had come for the first time.

Webster, who has designed jewelry for Madonna, also took part in a panel discussing diamond marketing alongside Jean-Marc Lieberherr, chief executive officer of the Diamond Producers Association Alex Popov, chairman of the World Diamond Mark Foundation, and Patricia Syvrud, executive director of the World Diamond Council.
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Tags: IDE, International Diamond Week in Israel, Israel, Israel Diamond Exchange, Jewelry, Rapaport News, Stephen Webster, Turkey, Yoram Dvash
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