The Israeli diamond industry recognizes the enormous potential of Turkey, and plans to help it establish an advanced diamond industry, sources have told Globes.
Globes quotes Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) senior VP Yaacov Kattan as saying: “If we don’t help the Turks in this area, there are more than a few countries that will be glad to do it, including India and South Africa. The Turkish jewelry industry appreciates Israel’s capabilities in this field, and in the new cooperation, we’ll help to establish advanced diamond polishing”.
“The leaders of the Turkish jewelry industry proposed to us a program for opening a diamond compound of 150,000 sq.m. in Istanbul, a large part of which will be used to manufacture diamonds. They need the know-how and technology that we can make available to them. Labor costs in Israel are high, salaries are about $2,000 per month, and there the cost is $450-500, in addition to the attraction of proximity to markets in Europe and access to markets that are closed to us at present, such as Arab countries. With the development of our relations with Turkey in this area, we’ll be able to enter more countries through the back door. We’ll send experts and advanced technologies to Turkey, and do some of the diamond polishing work within Turkey”, Kattan told “Globes.
IDE President Shmuel Schnitzer called the connection between Israeli diamond merchants and Turkey a strategic one. “It is very important to strengthen commercial ties with the Turkish jewelry sector. This is a large market that can be opened to Israeli diamond merchants. Turkey is emerging as a future leading jewelry manufacturer, and the connection between us is strategically important”, he said.
The Israel Diamond Exchange in Ramat Gan is considering having the Israel Diamond Institute of Companies open an office in Istanbul, concurrently with the understandings reached with the leaders of the Turkish jewelry industry, under which the local diamond manufacturers organization will found a diamond merchants club that will be registered at the World Federation of Diamond Bourses, and will be committed to the arbitration rules prevailing in the industry. The leaders of the Israel Diamond Exchange announced that they intended to help Turkey do this. According to Kattan, even before such a club is set up, the IKO leaders will develop a binding arbitration institution to solve monetary and commercial disputes between diamond merchants from the two countries when necessary.