Net polished diamond exports fell 12% in July; rose 3% from January – July

Israel’s net polished diamond exports rose 2.9% from January to July 2005, according to statistics reported by the Israel Ministry of Industry. Net polished diamond exports reached $4 billion in the first seven months of the year, compared to $3.9 billion for the same period in 2004. Israel’s net polished diamond exports declined 12.2% in July 2005, reaching $556.7 million, as compared to $634.4 million in July 2004.

Net imports of rough diamonds increased by 2.6% in July 2005 to reach $540.1 million, as compared to $526.5 million for the same period in 2004. From January to July 2005 rough diamond imports increased by 7.9%, reaching $3.2 billion, as compared to $3 billion in 2004.

Rough diamond exports from Israel continued to rise, increasing 16.7% in July 2005 to reach $306.3 million, compared to $262.6 million in the same period last year. In the first seven months of the year they rose 22.6% to total $2.2 billion, as compared to $1.8 billion for the same period in 2004. Israel’s imports of polished diamonds increased 16.6% in July to $344.4 million, as compared to $295.2 million in the same month last year. From January to July net imports of polished diamonds rose 17.2% to $2.206 billion, up from $1.883 billion in the same period in 2004.

Israel Diamond Controller Shmuel Mordechai noted that the 8% rise in rough imports since January 2005 was achieved despite the difficulties that the Israeli industry has experienced in acquiring rough diamonds during the year.

Israel Diamond Institute Chairman Simcha Lustig said that despite the decrease in July, he was optimistic that polished diamond exports would pick up after the summer holiday period.