Gemological Institute of America (GIA) will establish a new lab in the Uptown Tower of the Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC), the free trade zone in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
As part of a nine-year deal, the new GIA laboratory, set to open in mid-2023, will occupy more than 41,000 square feet across two floors of Dubai’s Uptown Tower. The lab may add as many as 500 skilled jobs to the DMCC’s business district.
Approximately $11 billion worth of rough and polished diamonds were traded in the UAE in the first quarter of the year, a 36% jump from the year before. By its calculations, the UAE is currently the world’s largest rough diamond trading hub and may soon become the market leader for polished stones as well.
A majority of the Uptown Tower’s 22 floors of office space are now pre-leased. The Tower is due to open its doors in the fourth quarter of 2022.
“The growing importance of Dubai as a diamond center and its outstanding infrastructure make the DMCC an excellent choice for a significant expansion of GIA’s capacity,” said Tom Moses, GIA executive vice president and chief laboratory and research officer, in a statement.
GIA currently has 10 labs worldwide; the Dubai lab will bring that to 11. It recently said that it was shutting its lab in Antwerp, Belgium, due to a lack of business.
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