Around 55 Antwerp diamond companies are readying to participate at the Hong Kong International Show, slated for March 5-9, 2010. Antwerp gem and jewellery industry cites the gem and jewellery market of China and Hong Kong as important for its growth. "We view the growing Chinese market with utmost importance, said AWDC CEO Freddy J. Hanard, pointing to recent research showing that that the Chinese jewellery market will be worth around $38 billion annually by the end of this decade, thus making it the largest in the world. "The AWDC is making very large efforts regarding the Chinese market because of the clear upward trend in demand for diamonds," he said.
Belgium’s export in 2009, showed growing diamond sales to Hong Kong and China. Mainland China and Hong Kong account for a quarter of Antwerp's polished diamond exports. Belgian exported $250.8 million worth of polished diamonds to China in 2009, and $1.85 billion to Hong Kong, with most of the gems ultimately being sold in China.
The 55 Belgian diamond firms will be exhibiting at the Antwerp pavilion, organised by the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC), and will be one of the largest national pavilions at the show. "Belgian diamantaires were among the first to recognise the huge potential that China offers, and the AWDC has for the past several years been organizing events and meetings to expand trade between the two countries," Hanard said. "China last year overtook Japan to become the second-largest diamond market in the world, and we are aiming to spread awareness that the Antwerp brand stands for high quality, top service and ethically pure diamonds," he added.
The AWDC had recently launched a website profiling Belgian diamond companies, allowing visitors and buyers fast and easy communication with Antwerp firms and instructions about the exact location of the businesses. The website also guides the visitors to the booth of the Antwerp diamond companies participating at the Hong Kong International Show, which takes place at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre.
Pursuant to the importance Mainland China has for the Belgian diamond industry, AWDC will be organising an Antwerp pavilion at the Shanghai Jewellery Show in May, reports say.