Shanghai: The World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB) Executive Committee (Exco) Meeting and Asia-Pacific Presidents’ Summit held in Shanghai on March 9 and 10 have ended after two days of intensive discussions on a range of crucial issues affecting the global diamond industry. Regional WFDB presidents, along with WFDB President Ernie Blom, were hosted by the Shanghai Diamond Exchange.
Among the issues discussed by Blom and the presidents of diamond exchanges in the region, including China, Thailand, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Australia, Japan, Hong Kong, South Korea and Russia, were declining profitability for the WFDB’s members due to high rough prices and falling polished prices, as well as the decrease in bank credit to the diamond trade and the necessity of boosting consumer demand via generic promotion campaigns.
“The Exco Meeting and Asia-Pacific Presidents’ Summit once again proved its worth in providing a setting for comprehensive discussions on all the critical issues of the day that are affecting our members,” said WFDB President Blom. “The Exco Meeting adopted a very firm stand on the issue of global standards of grading. We will have zero tolerance for flagrant abuse of grading standards.”
There was praise for the work of the World Diamond Mark (WDM) in promoting generic diamond marketing, and the success of its work in achieving cooperation with Turkey and Dubai. Participants were told that the WDM’s new web site has been launched, and in the coming months will be translated into Chinese. It will also feature WeChat, the Chinese version of Facebook.
“Coming to China, as with every previous visit, has again been an eye-opened,” said Blom. “This is an incredibly important country for the diamond industry. It takes $2 billion of diamond imports and turns them into $9 billion of diamond jewelry sales. We also had the pleasure of being hosted by the Vice-Mayor of Shanghai who expressed his support for the diamond and jewelry trade. These were two days of very positive meetings where regional presidents put the issues that impact the most on the table for discussion.
The Asia-Pacific Presidents’ Summit accepted an offer from the Korea Diamond Exchange to host next year’s meetings.