While India has allowed some activity to resume in Surat, the country's polishing hub, the industry has announced that the voluntary moratorium on rough imports is delayed to June 1st, with the call to its members to not import rough diamonds for the entire month of June, possibly longer.
In the new letter, the industry representatives say the plan to start the import ban on May 15th proved difficult as the rough purchases made in other countries - needed to keep the polishing factories running - didn't reach India, where the strict lockdown was prolonged by government. The GJEPC and other trade bodies believe that the time left between now and June 1st would be sufficient to import "pre-purchased" rough to India, as customs in the countries main entry points, Mumbai and Surat, have resumed activity.
Miners and producing countries across the globe are weary about the proposed ban on rough imports into the country, which they believe would have severe consequences for the survival of diamond mines, and the people whose livelihood depends on them. As a response to the COVID-19 pandemic, several mines have been put in care and maintenance, and miners have cut production and offer more flexibility to their customers across the board.