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India’s polished diamond export witnesses 0.39% increase.


Date: 30-04-2019
Subject: India’s polished diamond export witnesses 0.39% increase
SURAT: Export of cut and polished diamonds from India has witnessed 0.39% increase  compared to last year despite challenges of dwindling demand and tightening of bank finance after fraud by Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi.

Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) data shows that export of cut and polished diamonds in 2018-19 (April 2018 to March 2019) stood at $23.82 billion compared to $23.72 billion in 2017-18, registering a meagre 0.39% growth. 

The overall gross export of gems and jewellery export from India declined by 3.12% to $39.68 billion during April to March 2018-19 as compared to $40.96 billion during April to March 2017-18. 

Industry sources said this is first time in last one decade that export of cut and polished diamonds recorded a meagre growth matching the figures of previous year export. The industry was expecting negative growth due to various challenges faced by exporters and diamond manufacturers in Surat and Mumbai. 

GJEPC vice-chairman Colin Shah said, “The cut and polished diamond export  from India has been maintaining an average of 15% growth every year for last one decade. This time around, export growth is just 0.39%. The outlook for 2019-20 is de-growth between 0-5%.” 

Shah said the industry continues to face many challenges in doing business because of high duty on polished diamonds, no progressive SEZ policy, tightening of bank finance, frauds, GST on consignment, taxation in transfer pricing and customs on a day-to-day basis. 

“The bank fraud involving fugitive diamantaire Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi has destabilized the gems and jewellery sector to a certain extent. Post the bank fraud, banks are pulling back cash and have increased interest rates,” he added. 

The exit of Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi from Indian market has resulted in sharp fall in India’s silver jewellery export with over 75% decline reported in 2018-19. India exported $837.81 million worth of silver jewellery in April to March 2018-19 compared to $3.4 billion exported in April to March 2017-18. However, gold jewellery export witnessed growth of 24.36% in April to March 2018-19. The export of gold jewellery stood at $12.03 billion in 2018-19 compared to $9.67 billion in 2017-18. 

Source: timesofindia.indiatimes.com

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