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Belgium Diamond Trade Continues Recovery

Jul 5, 2021 4:16 AM   By Rapaport News
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RAPAPORT... 
Belgium’s polished-diamond exports more than doubled year on year to $555 million in May as the country’s trade bounced back from last year’s pandemic-induced slump. A sharp rise in export volume outweighed a drop in the average price per carat, according to recent data from the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC).

Belgium trade data for May 2021

  May 2021 Year-on-year change
     
Polished exports $555M 161%
Polished imports $603M 168%
Net polished exports -$48M Deficit increased 288%
Rough imports $664M 362%
Rough exports $883M 621%
Net rough imports -$219M 2020: Surplus of $21M
Net diamond account $171M 2020: Deficit of $34M
     
Polished exports by volume 297,044 carats 167%
Average price of polished exports $1,869/carat -2%
     
  January-May 2021 Year-on-year change
     
Polished exports $2.91B 44%
Polished imports $2.98B 38%
Net polished exports -$70M Deficit decreased 48%
Rough imports $3.99B 67%
Rough exports $4.3B 113%
Net rough imports -$305M 2020: Surplus of $381M
Net diamond account $235M 2020: Deficit of $515M
     
Polished exports by volume 1.4 million carats 39%
Average price of polished exports $2,008/carat 3%


Sources: Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC); Rapaport archives.

About the data: Belgium is usually a net exporter of polished diamonds. As such, net polished exports — representing polished exports minus polished imports — will normally be a positive number. The nation has historically been a net importer of rough, though in recent years, it has often been a net rough exporter. While Antwerp is still home to some high-value manufacturing, its main role in the market is as a facilitator of rough-diamond trading, with companies from around the world coming to the city to buy rough. The net diamond account is total rough and polished exports minus total imports. It is Belgium’s diamond trade balance, and shows the added value the nation creates by exporting rough or manufacturing it into polished.

 Image: A diamond worker in Antwerp. (Antwerp World Diamond Centre)
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Tags: Belgium, net diamond account, net polished exports, Net rough imports, polished exports, polished imports, Rapaport News, rough exports, rough imports
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