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DGFT issues separate HS Code for lab-grown diamonds




SURAT: Nearly three years after it was proposed by the finance minister in the union budget, the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) assigned separate Harmonised System (HS) code for natural and lab-grown diamonds.

According to the DGFT, the lab-grown diamonds have been assigned HS code of 7101, while the natural diamond has the while the natural diamond has the HS code of 7102. Till now the trade for natural and lab-grown diamonds has been done through the same HS Code.

Former union finance minister Arun Jaitely had proposed separate HS Code for lab-grown diamonds during the budget of 2016-17, following diamond industry’s representation complaining of rampant mixing of synthetic diamonds with original ones.

Industry experts stated it to be a big step towards in curbing the mixing of lab-grown with natural diamonds and thereby creating a fair trade environment with defined verticals for both. India’s polished diamond export is to the tune of $21 billion per annum, while India imports rough diamonds to the tune of over $15 billion per annum.

GJEPC data show that the export of synthetic stones increased to Rs 400 crore between April-2015 to January 2016 compared to Rs 350 crore during the same period in the previous year. However, the export of synthetic stones has gone up to over Rs 1,800 crore in 2018-19.


“The sale of lab-grown diamonds is quite rampant in the domestic market, too. It was in the 1990s that the lab-grown diamonds started surfacing in the consumer market. Due to the ever-evolving technology, the difference between natural and lab-grown diamond is diminishing to the naked eye. A consumer can know the difference only by going to a laboratory,” said a DE beers sight-holder.

Courtesy: Times of India

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