Israel’s polished diamond exports slumped in the first half as sentiment weakened among traders, writes Rapaport News. Exports fell to $2.61 billion, a 14 percent decline as compared to 2015, while polished imports slid 10 percent to $1.62 billion, according to government data. Exports to the U.S., Israel’s largest market, fell 15 percent, while to Hong Kong they plunged 26 percent. Rapaport News received comments from traders that they are facing a tough trading environment this year as global demand continues to decline and Israel struggles to maintain its place in the market. Israel rough diamond imports amounted to $1.63 billion, more or less steady as compared to with last year's poor results, while exports rough exports increased 2 percent to $1.39 billion.