13 Things You Didn’t Know About The Diamond Industry

image - Flickr / Kim Alaniz
image – Flickr / Kim Alaniz

1. Akon owns a diamond mine in South Africa. He has gone on record to say that his diamond mine, however, is dedicated to avoiding the use of blood diamonds.

2. There are two diamond industries: one dealing with gem-grade diamonds and another for industrial-grade diamonds.

3. Over 100 tons of synthetic diamonds are produced each year. They are used for skin exfoliant, saw blades for cutting asphalt and marble, among other tools.

4. A planet made out of diamonds was discovered in 2011. But upon closer inspection, scientists claimed that the interior of the planet may “not be so glam” inside.

5. This 1982 article says that diamonds are actually really bad investments.

6. As 2013, there have been over 3 million deaths attributed to conflict diamond mining.

Swedish manufacturer Atlas Copco Craelius. From left: One Tungsten Carbide Bit and two Impregnated Drill Bits.
Swedish manufacturer Atlas Copco Craelius. From left: One Tungsten Carbide Bit and two Impregnated Drill Bits.

7. Ian Smillie resigned from the Kimberley Process because even he, one of the key architects of the group, felt the Kimberley Process was ineffective to prevent conflict diamond mining.

The Kimberley Process has been confronted by many challenges in the past five years, and it has failed to deal quickly or effectively with most of them: smuggling and fraud in Brazil, and issues of even greater importance in Côte d’Ivoire/Ghana, Guyana, Venezuela, Zimbabwe and now Guinea and Lebanon… in the case of Venezuela, we have effectively condoned diamond smuggling – the very thing we were established to prevent. – Ian Smillie

8. De Beers claimed their diamonds are 99.8% conflict-free, which opened the doors to competitors. This led to their market share decreasing from 70% to 40%.

9. About 49% of the diamonds in market circulation today are from Central and South America.

image - Flickr / jurvetson
image – Flickr / jurvetson

10. Russia has some of the richest diamond mines — they produced about 1/5th of the world’s output!

11. About 92% of the world’s diamonds are cut and polished in Surat, India.

12. Namibia’s diamond exporting is roughly 40% of their annual earnings.

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13. A percentage of revenue from diamond exporting goes to help organizations fight AIDS. TC mark

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