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US Sanctions on Russian Diamonds Mainly Impacting Supply to India, Antwerp Diamond Center Says

© Sputnik / Ilya Pitalev / Go to the mediabankAlrosa's diamond
Alrosa's diamond - Sputnik International, 1920, 13.06.2022
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The US sanctions imposed on Russian rough diamonds are mostly having a serious impact on India's supply chain, Antwerp World Diamond Centre head of media relations Tom Neys told Sputnik.
In early April, the Biden administration imposed sanctions on Russian diamond mining company Alrosa, which is responsible for 90% of Russia's diamond mining capacity and is the source of about a third of all diamonds worldwide. Prior to the designation on Alrosa, President Joe Biden issued an executive order to ban US imports of non-industrial diamonds from Russia.
"The problem is mainly in India today," Neys said. "The supply chain to India is seriously disrupted and the payment issues are still not fully resolved. Also, handling to Dubai goes problematic."
The disruption to India's supply chain has a huge impact on employment in the country, working weeks in the polish factories are getting shortened because of the supply shortage, Neys said.
In late May, the president of India's Diamond Workers Union Gujarat, Ramesh Zilariya, told Sputnik that Western sanctions on rough diamonds have ended up devastating workers in India's polishing industry, where unemployment, wage reductions, and suicide rates are now on the rise.
The Antwerp World Diamond Centre, which is the world's largest hub for rough and polished diamonds, still sees diamonds coming from Russia, but with big delays due to double and triple checking if all stages in transport and handling are fully compliant with the current sanctions, Neys said.
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