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Rio Tinto holds preview of its 2014 Argyle Pink Diamonds Tender for Japan’s First Lady
Japan’s First Lady made her maiden visit to Western Australia
By: Diamond World News Service
Jul 15 2014 5:37PM
Reference: 9336  

Rio Tinto held a special preview of the 50 lots of its 2014 Argyle Pink Diamonds Tender collection in a special preview for Japan’s First Lady Mrs Akie Abe during her first visit to Western Australia. Mrs Abe was invited by the Western Australian Government.

The 50 diamonds featuring in the tender are of the rarest kind and of a year’s production from Rio Tinto’s Argyle mine in the East Kimberley region of Western Australia. The hero of the collection is a 1.59 carat Emerald cut Fancy Intense Purplish Pink named Argyle Toki™. Its name depicts the delicate pink underwings of a rare Japanese bird, symbolising the importance of Japan as the premier export market for rare pink diamonds.

Rio Tinto Diamonds managing director Jean-Marc Lieberherr said “We were delighted to welcome Mrs Abe and show her at first hand these beautiful gems, the pinnacle of Australia’s mineral wealth and symbolic of our enduring relationship with Japan.” The Japanese market has been critical to the development of Rio Tinto’s rare pink diamond business over the past 30 years. The pink diamond jewellery phenomenon in Japan began in the late 1980s, when Japanese designers boldly used Argyle’s pink diamonds in jewellery. Today Rio Tinto sells around 30 per cent of its Argyle pink diamonds into Japan.

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