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A diamond bourse has banned synthetic stones from its premises
A diamond bourse has banned synthetic stones from its premises

Diamond dealers say ‘no’ to synthetics

An international diamond bourse has banned synthetic diamonds from its premises, labelling it a “natural diamond zone”.

The Bharat Diamond Bourse (BDB) in Mumbai, India came to the decision after the “overwhelming majority” of its members voted in favour of the proposal at an annual general meeting held in late September.

Under the ban, no person or organisation is allowed to carry, trade or promote any form of synthetic diamond on the bourse’s premises.

Shmuel Schnitzer, IDE president
Shmuel Schnitzer, IDE president

“[This is] to ensure the growth of the natural diamond trade, strengthen consumer confidence and reassure faith and trust in diamonds,” a BDB statement explained.

The statement also claimed BDB was the “first and only diamond bourse in the world to declare its entire premises as a natural diamond zone”.

In 2013, the Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) board voted to prohibit synthetic diamonds. However, at the time, IDE president Shmuel Schnitzer emphasised the ban was only from the IDE trading floor.

“The IDE trading floor is the most active and vibrant bourse floor in the world … and we felt synthetic diamonds have no business being on the IDE floor,” Schnitzer explained, making a point to add that synthetic diamond trading was welcome anywhere else within the IDE complex.

Ernie Blom, WFDB president
Ernie Blom, WFDB president

In response to the BDB’s decision, World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB) president Ernie Blom explained that each WFDB-affiliated exchange was within its rights to decide its own synthetic diamond policy but noted that the WFDB itself was not opposed to the dealing of such stones provided they were disclosed.

“[I] accept there could be a market for them [synthetic diamonds],” he stated. “We only insist that such stones are fully disclosed so that the trade and consumers know exactly what they are being offered. This is critical in ensuring consumer confidence.”

Not all industry participants have been supportive of the move, with some taking to internet forums to question whether the ban would be enforceable given the challenges associated with synthetic diamond detection. The BDB was also criticised for penalising all synthetic diamond dealers for the sake of a few unscrupulous traders.

The BDB statement did not provide any details on possible disciplinary action that might be taken in the event of a breach.


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Thursday, 17 October, 2019 09:26am
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