After bouncing back strongly in the first quarter of 2017, Israel's polished diamond exports slowed significantly in the second quarter, according to data from the Economy and Industry Ministry. Rapaport News writes that Israel's exports of polished diamonds for the half-year ended June declined 3% to $2.55 billion excluding returned goods, while volume fell 6% to 919,422 carats. In the January-to-March period, exports of polished diamonds jumped 16% to $1.7 billion, which means that April - June exports slumped to approximately $850 million. Polished exports to Hong Kong, Rapaport specifies, increased 7.5% to $733.9 million, while shipments to Belgium jumped 29% to $252.6 million. The big decline was in exports to the U.S., Israel's largest market, ashipments to the American market, including goods that came back, dropped 6% to $3.11 billion.
Meanwhile, following an industry-wide trend, rough imports declined 6% to $1.53 billion, with rough exports down 1.8% to $1.37 billion.