Classy niche market: Europe and the USA benefit from the diamond trade with Russia. Only one country refuses to do so (Indo & New York News & Announces – November 23, 2022)

Wearing gloves, jewels are draped on velvet in the window of a shop in Antwerp’s diamond district. The Belgian port city has been one of the hubs for the gemstone business since the 15th century.

According to the Antwerp World Diamond Centre, 37 billion euros are turned over here every year, discreetly and confidentially. When asked where the diamonds come from, a jeweler replies with a laugh: “I’d rather not ask.” His reluctance is not entirely unfounded.

The rough diamonds come from Angola, Congo, Sierra Leone, South Africa and also from Russia, as Sigal Vantzovski, owner of Binson Diamonds in Antwerp, explains. They are brought to Belgium to be polished in manufactories. The diamonds are then processed into pieces of jewelery and sold in her shop, among other things.

It is a posh niche market with billions in sales, from which not least Russia – despite the war in Ukraine – continues to benefit. Since the start of the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine, the European Union has imposed numerous sanctions on Moscow. For example, the importation of certain goods like gold, vodka and caviar – Russian diamonds were spared, and for a reason.

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