On December 4, the press service of the Russian leader reported that Vladimir Putin had signed a decree, which was crucial for the world diamond market. It is the decree on the liberalization of Russian diamond exports. Russia, which controls a quarter of the world's diamond production, has drawn a line under the one-channel system of world diamond supplies dictated by De Beers.
From now on, Russian diamond cutters, as well as Russia's diamond giant ALROSA and the state stockpile agency Gokhran, can export diamonds. This cardinally changes the distribution of power on the world diamond market. The decree on exports and imports of natural raw and faceted diamonds, signed by the Russian President on November 30, 2002, can be justly called revolutionary.
Over recent years, Russia was scaring the world either with the legalization of processing customer-owned raw materials banned in 1997 under De Beers' pressure, or with liberalization of sales of diamonds from the State Fund. However, the reality has surpassed all expectations. In addition to all this, Russia decided to abolish licensing of diamond exports. Russia's major diamond exporter ALROSA will get a five-year quota.
But the main point is that Russia allows diamond cutters to enter the foreign market. At the same time, this does not concern exports of their own products; they export cut diamonds freely. Now, they will be able to sell the surplus of purchased raw diamonds abroad. According to the decree, Russian diamond cutters have received the right to export up to 15 percent of raw diamonds bought at ALROSA, for processing without sale, the Kommersant newspaper reported.