Dubai has bolstered the support it provides for traders of lab-grown diamonds (LGDs) as well. Image Credit: Shutterstock

Dubai: The world’s flagship free zone, Dubai Multi Commodity Centre (DMCC), was headlined by 2 per cent year-on-year growth in the value of rough and polished diamonds trade to hit $38.3 billion. This represents a five-year compound annual growth rate of 11 per cent, DMCC revealed in its diamond trade figures for 2023. The value of polished diamonds traded in the UAE grew 32 per cent yearly to $16.9 billion.

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Despite a global 20 per cent drop in rough diamond prices, the UAE’s rough diamond trade only decreased by 13 per cent year-on-year in 2023, maintaining robust volumes, DMCC reported. A total of $21.3 billion of rough diamonds were traded in the UAE in 2023.

Historically focused on rough diamonds, Dubai’s diamond industry now sees polished diamonds contributing 44 per cent to the total trade value. The Gemological Institute of America’s new laboratory in Dubai, opened in February 2024, is expected to boost the sector further.

Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, DMCC, said. “Our appeal to diamond industry segments worldwide is exemplified by our ability to maintain strong trade volumes in rough whilst rapidly advancing polished and lab-grown diamonds.”

He added, “The polished segment now represents almost half of our diamond trade, consolidating our status as the world’s number one hub for rough and polished and, with major industry players continuing to be drawn to Dubai away from the old hubs of yesterday, DMCC will continue to set the benchmark for the services and value that diamond traders need to grow and prosper.”

Dubai has also bolstered the support it provides for traders of lab-grown diamonds (LGDs) as it looks to replicate the success it has seen in the natural diamond industry. The value of LGDs traded in 2023 rose 10 per cent year-on-year, reaching $1.6 billion.