The world jewelery is experiencing a real revolution. The pandemic and the war in Ukraine have caused a change in the price of precious stones: diamonds have become more expensive and the smallest ones are now the most coveted.
A Diamond it is forever, so take care of it and keep it. Thus should now end the famous catchphrase of De Beersespecially because of the changes that are taking place in what these precious stones is concerned, that they are not only increasing their emotional value, but above all their price and their exclusive character.
The world jewelry is experiencing a real revolution. The pandemic first and the sanctions imposed against Russia later, have caused a significant change in the price of precious stones, making diamonds more expensivein general and the smaller ones, the most used, in particular, and turning the latter into one of the most coveted objects of desire by jewelers around the world.
The reason: the increase in the purchase of diamonds in times of pandemic by Americans. In fact, 7% more chose this stone as a gift last Christmas.
Another reason, the closure of the large Australian mining company argyles, whose production was for years the largest in the world. And finally, the veto against the Russian company alrosaspecialized mainly in small stoneswhose diamonds have disappeared from the European and American markets, as a sanction imposed by the war against Ukraine.
The Russian Alrosa against the Dutch De Beers
alrosa It represents a third of all small rough diamonds in the world. In 2021 it achieved up to 32 million carats, valued at 4,000 million euros, more or less the same as the Dutch De Beersits main competitor, and although it plans to continue marketing its diamonds via India, where they are cut and polished, it is not clear that the Indian Government will accept, nor could they be acquired by European or American merchants.
The increase in demand added to the scarcity of these stones in Europe is making itself felt in the world industry, driving up prices. Thus, while shoppers in large city centers like Antwerp Y dubai resolve how they can continue to maintain their import levels, diamonds from Russian mines have stopped flowing to Surat, the Indian city that is the world center of diamond cutting, from where many of the pieces were imported.
much more expensive small diamonds
This change is of great concern in Antwerp, the diamond capital, from where Tom Neys, spokesman for the Word Diamond Centerhas indicated that it is feared that Russia will manage to place its diamonds in countries that do not belong to the EU, with which US and European citizens would not have easy access to these products, except by paying much more expensively.
They would be practically limited to very buoyant economies or exceptional gifts such as the diamond earrings valued at 30,000 euros that the emir of Qatar gave to the Queen Letizia as present for his state visit.
Antwerp, world diamond center
Russia was a vital partner for the diamond trade in this Belgian city where 1,800 jewelery companies are based, moving hundreds of millions of euros every day with their buying, cutting and polishing activity. In fact, more than 1,000 million Russian precious stones passed through its port every year.
In the new scenario Antwerp can lose more than a third of its business to countries of Middle East and Asia. Although it could benefit in part the European company De Beers based in Luxembourg.
Diamonds are up 20% in 2022
On the other hand, the boycott diamonds of Alrosa, in addition to raising the price of small diamonds by 20% so far this year, has ensured that manufacturers of laboratory-grown gemstones and other synthetic gems are gaining market share in the world of jewelery .
Just three months after the start of the war, Lefoko MoagiMinister of Minerals and Energy of Botswana, another of the big diamond-exporting countries, recently acknowledged at a conference that there is a risk that the gap left by natural diamonds in the market will be filled with unnatural diamonds, which for jewelry in general would be a tremendous setback, but at the same time a great challenge.
The era of synthetic diamonds
The synthetic diamonds they have been around since the 1950s. They are exactly the same as the natural ones in size, shape, density and beauty, but they are not as hard. Of course, they are much cheaper because they are produced artificially, some incorporating eco-sustainable forms of production, with wind energy and photovoltaic panels.
They were first obtained in 1954 when General Electric He crystallized carbon using a method based on the same conditions for the formation of diamonds in the Earth’s mantle: high pressures and high temperatures.
That’s how the first were born artificial diamondscreated simulating the same geological process as the natural ones, but faster and in a factory.
With them, harsh extraction methods that have damaged the environment throughout history, and that have harshly exploited human beings, especially in conflict zones, are avoided, creating a current against the so-called “blood diamonds” that Leo Di Caprio popularized with his famous movie.
Moreover, the famous American actor is one of the shareholders of Diamond Foundry the new sustainable synthetic diamond factory to be built in Trujillo (Cceres) and which will leave an investment of more than 600 million euros in the town, creating 300 direct jobs when it opens in 2024.