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Higher Average Price Drives Belgium Exports

Shipment value jumps 17% in October despite steady volumes.
Nov 25, 2018 9:17 AM   By Rapaport News
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RAPAPORT... Belgium’s polished trade grew strongly in October, according to data from the Antwerp World Diamond Centre. Exports rose 17% amid a higher average price and steady volumes, reflecting trading in higher-value diamonds. Export value was up for the first 10 months of the year, also boosted by an increase in the average price.

Millions unless stated otherwise Oct 2018 Year-on-year change
Polished exports $953.5 17%
Polished imports $922.2 17%
Net polished exports $31.3 2%
Rough imports $759.9 -16%
Rough exports $890.2 7%
Net rough imports -$130.2 2017: Surplus of $74.1M
Net diamond account $161.6 2017: Deficit of $43.4M
Polished exports: volume 405,319 carats 0%
Average price of polished exports $2,352/carat 17%

Jan-Oct 2018 Year-on-year change
Polished exports $9,830 3%
Polished imports $9,949.4 6%
Net polished exports -$119.4 2017: Surplus of $84.2M
Rough imports $9,043.2 1%
Rough exports $10,511.3 4%
Net rough imports -$1,468.7 Deficit increased 27%
Net diamond account $1,348.8 8%
Polished exports: volume 4,030,377 carats -3%
Average price of polished exports $2,439/carat 6%

Source: Antwerp World Diamond Centre; Rapaport archives

About the data: Belgium is usually a net exporter of polished diamonds. As such, net polished exports — representing polished exports minus polished imports — will normally be a positive number. The nation is also a net exporter of rough. While Antwerp is home to some high-value manufacturing, its main role in the market is as a facilitator of rough-diamond trading, with companies from around the world coming to the city to buy rough. The net diamond account is total rough and polished exports minus total imports. It is Belgium’s diamond trade balance, and shows the added value the nation creates by exporting rough or manufacturing it into polished.

Image: A diamond worker in Antwerp. (Antwerp World Diamond Centre)
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Tags: Antwerp, Antwerp World Diamond Centre, AWDC, Belgium, net diamond account, net polished exports, Net rough imports, polished exports, polished imports, Rapaport News, rough exports, rough imports, trade data
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