A very little known figure on international trade. Dubai commercializes more than $21.2 billion/year in diamonds worldwide and has a unique know-how recognized by all. Diamond dealers, based in Israel, sell more than $12 billion/year in the world.
According to information from Dubai, since the signing of a peace agreement, professionals in the diamond sector in Israel wish to turn more and more to Dubai, to settle there, and possibly to abandon one of the most famous districts of Antwerp in small steps.
The diamantaires district of Antwerp is an area located at the foot of the Antwerp train station and is known as the world’s diamond hub. 70% of the world’s diamonds come from Antwerp. This district contains 1,700 diamond companies, 4,500 diamond dealers and more than 10,000 inhabitants.
This neighborhood has existed since the 15th century; however, the development of the trade and the first diamond flows appeared in 1886.
There are four of the world’s most important diamond stock exchanges located in the district: the Beurs voor Diamanthandel, the Diamantclub van Antwerpen, the Vrije Diamanthandel and the Antwerpsche Diamantkring.
Dubai, with a value of 21.2 billion diamonds traded last year according to DMCC, and Israel with about 12 billion according to its own diamond exchange, are the main diamond trading centers in the Middle East; local traders say they are literally flooded with inquiries from Israel.
In the same week that Israel and the Arab Emirates normalized their relations, Israeli diamond dealer Zvi Shimshi headed directly to the Emirates to open a company in Dubai, a regional trading hub that is a very important center for the exchange of gemstones.
He is one of 38 Israelis hosted by the Dubai Multi-Product Center (DMCC) at the heart of the Dubai Diamond Exchange, who are said to have recently been approached to establish a permanent presence there, in an apparent indication of how regional diplomatic policies can profoundly alter the dynamics of global trade.
Dubai traders say they are inundated with requests for information from Israelis who usually work with Antwerp, Belgium – the world’s most important center for polished and rough diamonds.