Standard Chartered Opts out of Diamond Sector

London: London-based bank Standard Chartered, one of the largest lenders to the diamond industry midstream has announced that it will shut its diamond and jewelry business, according to a report published in The Times of India.

It was reported in March that the bank, which has lent around $2 billion to the industry, had asked its diamond-processing clients, particularly in Antwerp and India, to get payment insurance or provide up to 100-percent collateral.

It was said at the time that the bank was making the move in response to the need for increased compliance reporting and regulatory capital costs, and followed the bank being caught up in the Winsome Diamonds and Jewellery default, one of the largest in Indian history.

Standard Chartered’s proposed exit follows more recent examples of other banks also leaving the diamond and jewelry sector, including the closure of the Antwerp Diamond Bank and Royal Bank of Scotland and ABN Amro’s decision to scale back their loan businesses.