Surat: The export of polished diamonds from India increased 41% in December 2020 at Rs 12,692 crore compared to Rs 8,000 crore in the same period the previous year. This is first time after Covid-19 that the export of polished diamond has increased.
The coronavirus pandemic and the disruption in the supply chain dimmed the glitter of the world’s largest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat. However, Christmas has come as a silver lining for the diamond industry. According to the figures provided by the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), the polished diamond export witnessed 41% increase in December 2020 compared to the same month the previous year.
Surat’s diamond industry was the worst-hit as its large number of its workers got infected with Covid-19 post-June when the units reopened after three months of lockdown. About 50% of the cases reported in the city were from the diamond units. According to the GJEPC, the export of polished diamonds decreased 30% between April-November, 2020. However, the export of polished diamonds increased to a whopping 158% to $1,600 million in November 2020 compared to $620 million in the corresponding month the previous year.
Industry sources said that the recovery in the polished diamond export is attributed to the holiday season in the US and China. Indian online retailers have recorded growth of 40% during Diwali. Thanksgiving spending rose by nearly 22% with the 37% jump in retail sales in the US. “There is a steady demand from Hong Kong and China,” said Colin Shah, chairman of GJEPC.