Dubai: Dubai Diamond Exchange (DDE) signed a partnership deal with Stargems, a company specialising in the sourcing and supply of diamonds, to host a series of rough diamond tenders in 2018.

The deal is expected to boost the flow of rough diamonds through Dubai. It also enables international members, miners and suppliers to trade and distribute rough diamonds at Stargems events hosted at the DDE’s headquarters in Dubai, according to a statement on Sunday from the DMCC, a free zone for trade.

“Dubai has fast emerged as one of the world’s top three diamond centres, and we are always looking at ways of nurturing and growing this footprint by connecting producers with buyers along the Dubai-Africa axis and beyond,” Ahmad Bin Sulayem, executive chairman of DMCC, said in a statement on Sunday.

Stargems said that diamond tenders are an increasingly important sales mechanism for the business, through which it can bridge the gap between diamond-producing nations and manufacturing units in Asia.

“This partnership will guarantee a secure and transparent tendering process in a regulated environment provided by the DDE,” stated Shailesh Javeri, chairman of the Stargems Group.

Dubai’s diamond trading industry was valued at $26 billion (Dh97.96 billion) in 2016.

In 2017, DDE hosted tenders attended by over 130 international buyers, with the opening of Almas Diamond Services DMCC, the UAE’s first diamond polishing facility, in November, further elevating the DDE’s global standing.