Moscow Diamond Bourse Celebrates WFDB Membership

The Moscow Diamond Bourse hosted leaders of the international diamond and jewelry industries at a special event in Moscow on Dec 13 to celebrate the bourse’s acceptance in June as a member of the World Federation of Diamond Bourses. A central theme of the gathering is Russia stands at the cusp of developing into a significant jewelry market, and the new bourse will be a valuable addition to the infrastructure serving the local industry and trade.

A conclave was held at the Golden Ring Hotel in Moscow led by MDB president Lev Polyakov. Eli Izhakoff, chairman of the World Diamond Council; Gaetano Cavalieri, president of CIBJO, The World Jewellery Confederation; Avi Paz, vice president of the WFDB, and Shmuel Schnitzer, honorary life president of the WFDB were among the more than 30 representatives who flew in from around the world. Ambassadors of Belgium, South Africa, and Angola also attended, along with members of the Russian and Belarus government and parliament, as well as heads of Russia’s precious metals and minerals industries.

Polyakov told the gathering that, as a young organization in a developing market, the MDB is keen to receive the advice and assistance of the industry leaders present. He added that the operating license obtained by the bourse would allow it to work not only with diamonds and colored gemstones, but also with precious metals.

Izhakoff and Cavalieri, in their addresses to the conclave, spoke of the economic benefit of the new Bourse for the industry and country.

“As you are a producing country, the creation of a second bourse will hopefully increase internal trade and enhance manufacturing of diamonds and jewelry,” Izhakoff said.

“It is my experience that worldwide, the development of the jewelry industry has a beneficial influence on local economies. As Russia is joining the World Trade Organization, your country will benefit from developing its super economy under the WTO banner,” Cavalieri said. “The new bourse will no doubt bring extra benefit to industry. We are happy to see Russia becoming stronger, and playing an ever-growing role in the international diamond and jewelry industry.”

Vitaly Basygysov, director of the Precious Stones and Metals Committee of the State Duma talked about the rapid changes the diamond and precious metals market had undergone in the past decade and a half. Until just 10 years ago, the sector was entirely government owned and managed, he said. Now, new laws allow private enterprises to own and develop the sector.

Eskamilla Vega Laura, deputy general director of Capital Construction at the MDB, a trained architect, talked about the construction of the future diamond bourse building. The ‘World Wide Diamond Center – Moscow’ will be a 12-story, 70,000 square-meter building with an additional three floors below ground level for the secure arrival and shipment of precious cargoes.

One of the advantages of the new building, Vega Laura said, is that it will be situated close to the Moscow ring road and to the Paveletskaya railway station, which runs a frequent train service to the Domodedovo international airport at which traders and suppliers from abroad arrive. There will be an underground passage connecting the station, which is a 45-minute trip from the airport, to the new exchange. The ground floor of the complex will provide more than 5,000 square feet of space for retail jewelry outlets which will be open to the general public as well as bourse members.