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28 posts from October 2005

Diamonds Are for Men

At London's Royal Stock Exchange bar, patrons sparkle with gold bracelets, diamond earrings and platinum necklaces. And it's not only the women. In Britain, as in the United States, men's pieces now account for more than 10 percent of jewelry sales, and are one of the fastest-growing sectors for fine jewelry.

Why? The '90s casual look gave way to a brief revival of the corporate suit, which is now adding a hint of glam. Socially, bling on the necks of working-class men has made male jewelry sufficiently macho, and the rise of metrosexual chic has made it OK for executives. Says Mary Brittain, editor of Jewelry magazine, "Expensive, sophisticated and subtle is in. We're a post-bling generation now."

Read the rest of the story at http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/9784780/site/newsweek/


Botswana asks S.Africa to mix diamonds in Gaborone

Botswana President Festus Mogae appealed to neighbour South Africa on Wednesday to allow its diamonds to be mixed in his country, effectively asking for changes to a controversial law before parliament.

South Africa's parliament was due the same day to pass the Diamond Amendment Bill, which aims to form a state diamond trader to help stimulate more jewellery manufacturing and gem cutting, especially by blacks, in the world's fourth largest diamond producing country.

The parliamentary minerals committee last week dismissed warnings from De Beers, the world's largest diamond producer, that the law could quash plans to move its aggregation centre from London to Botswana's capital Gaborone.

"My second major request is for you to permit your diamonds to be aggregated by the diamond trading corporation in Gaborone, instead of London," Mogae told a joint sitting of South Africa's parliament.

Botswana is the world's biggest diamond producer and Mogae said diamonds could still be made available to South Africa's cutters and polishers with the aggregation centre in Gaborone.

Read the rest of the story at http://za.today.reuters.com/news/NewsArticle.aspx?type=topNews&storyID=2005-10-26T144905Z_01_BAN653313_RTRIDST_0_OZATP-MINERALS-SAFRICA-DIAMONDS-20051026.XML


Botswana asks S.Africa to mix diamonds in Gaborone

Botswana President Festus Mogae appealed to neighbour South Africa on Wednesday to allow its diamonds to be mixed in his country, effectively asking for changes to a controversial law before parliament.

South Africa's parliament was due the same day to pass the Diamond Amendment Bill, which aims to form a state diamond trader to help stimulate more jewellery manufacturing and gem cutting, especially by blacks, in the world's fourth largest diamond producing country.

The parliamentary minerals committee last week dismissed warnings from De Beers, the world's largest diamond producer, that the law could quash plans to move its aggregation centre from London to Botswana's capital Gaborone.

"My second major request is for you to permit your diamonds to be aggregated by the diamond trading corporation in Gaborone, instead of London," Mogae told a joint sitting of South Africa's parliament.

Botswana is the world's biggest diamond producer and Mogae said diamonds could still be made available to South Africa's cutters and polishers with the aggregation centre in Gaborone.

Read the rest of the story at http://za.today.reuters.com/news/NewsArticle.aspx?type=topNews&storyID=2005-10-26T144905Z_01_BAN653313_RTRIDST_0_OZATP-MINERALS-SAFRICA-DIAMONDS-20051026.XML


No Botswana export duty on diamonds

Botswanamap Government said yesterday that it is unlikely to introduce export duty on rough diamonds produced in Botswana as South Africa recently did. There would also be no promulgation of regulations aimed at stimulating jewellery manufacturing and gem cutting, Permanent Secretary (PS) in the Ministry of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources, Dr Akolang Tombale said.

Tombale was responding to suggestions that Botswana should emulate South Africa in imposing duty export and introducing legislations on rough diamond, to improve beneficiation.

“This business cannot be regulated. We can’t do it the way countries such as (South Africa) are doing. I don’t think we would achieve what they have achieved on export duty,” Tombale explained. This week, the South African government proposed an export duty of 15 percent on rough diamonds; a move that is believed would enhance diamond processing in the country.

But Tombale maintained that Botswana, the world’s biggest diamonds producer by value could not do what small producers do. Botswana currently produces over 30 million carats from its four mines of Orapa, Letlhakane, Jwaneng and Damtshaa. South Africa on the other hand is the world’s fourth largest diamond producer by value.

“We are the largest producer and should derive maximum benefit from that. Small producers should be based on what we do,” Tombale said. With a contribution of about 35 percent to the gross domestic product (GDP), the mining sector contributes heavily to the country’s economy, unlike other economies in the region like Angola, South Africa and Namibia.

Read the rest of the story at http://www.mmegi.bw/2005/October/Friday21/5051721591337.html


Diamonds Are for Men

At London's Royal Stock Exchange bar, patrons sparkle with gold bracelets, diamond earrings and platinum necklaces. And it's not only the women. In Britain, as in the United States, men's pieces now account for more than 10 percent of jewelry sales, and are one of the fastest-growing sectors for fine jewelry.

Why? The '90s casual look gave way to a brief revival of the corporate suit, which is now adding a hint of glam. Socially, bling on the necks of working-class men has made male jewelry sufficiently macho, and the rise of metrosexual chic has made it OK for executives. Says Mary Brittain, editor of Jewelry magazine, "Expensive, sophisticated and subtle is in. We're a post-bling generation now."

Read the rest of the story at http://msnbc.msn.com/id/9784780/site/newsweek/


Diamonds may fund Ivory Coast arms trade

Cotedivoire A group of UN experts suspect cacao and illegal diamond receipts may fund arms purchases despite an embargo on Ivory Coast, a UN source said.

In a report prepared for the UN Security Council, the experts, who had been tasked with assessing the effectiveness of a UN arms embargo imposed on the West African country, recommend an audit of the Ivorian cacao trade as well as an investigation into the illegal export of diamonds.

The report fell short of establishing a direct link between weapons and the commodities, but the UN source told AFP that the experts "well suspect that a correlation exists".

Read the rest of the story at http://www.int.iol.co.za/index.php?click_id=68&art_id=qw1129968722873B252&set_id=


Reaction to dress code mixed

Heat guard Gary Payton doesn't have a problem with the new NBA dress code until you get to Section 3, titled "excluded items."

Among the seven lines of no-nos there's the combustible fifth line that prohibits "chains, pendants, or medallions worn over the player's clothes."

Some NBA players see that as a battle line.

"The medallion stuff, that's racist to me," Payton said Wednesday.

Heat center Alonzo Mourning is a regular in the corporate world as a businessman to seek donors for his numerous charitable works. He finds the racial angle laughable.

"If you look at that as racist then you don't understand the corporate world," he said Wednesday.

All around the NBA small fires are burning.

Some players think the ban on jewelry outside the shirt is simply the league wanting to look more professional. But others see it as the league wanting to distance itself from hip-hop culture, and possibly African-American culture.

Indiana's Stephen Jackson called the ban on jewelry outside the shirt a "racist statement." Golden State's Jason Richardson said it's aimed unfairly at black players.

Heat center Shaquille O'Neal and guard Dwyane Wade stayed away from the racial angle altogether.

"I don't get into all that," O'Neal said Friday. "I just know inside the building when you're taking care of business it should be in business attire. Outside on your way home you should be able to do what you want to do. If you want to wear a big diamond chain, to each his own."

Read the rest of the story at http://www.palmbeachpost.com/heat/content/sports/epaper/2005/10/22/z2b_heat_1022.html


Diamonds are the new fad of fashion conscious Indians

NEW DELHI: Designer watches are becoming the style-statement of fashion-conscious Indians. Variety has now become the spice of life as far as new designs and shapes of watches are concerned.

That is why some jewellers have made swift changes in style and design by providing discerning customers with a variety of diamond watches.

Diamond watches have become ultimate style-setter for Indians in many occasions. Some foreign imported items have also made an entry into the Indian market. Most of the manufacturers have countered square, oval or round watches that fit into every lifestyle from easy going while some beautiful golden markings in the round dial makes time watching a pleasing one too.

In Delhi, where the magnificent watch extravaganza is being exhibited in an event called 'Timeless Jewels 2005', customers are clear about what draws them to the otherwise 'mere crystals of carbon'.

"A watch by itself is basically an instrument to tell time. But now the role of the watches is changing. Embellished with diamond these watches connote self identity and adumbrates on the desires of the owner.

Today an Indian buyer is buying more diamonds. It is a sort of upgrading themselves from steel to gold and similarly from gold to diamond. It is what I would say a natural progression," says John D'Souza, Brand Manager, Cartier.

Read the rest of the story at http://www.newindpress.com/NewsItems.asp?ID=IE420051021070906&Page=4&Title=Features+-+People+%26+Lifestyle&Topic=0


Stronger than steel, harder than diamonds

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Working with a material 10 times lighter than steel -- but 250 times stronger -- would be a dream come true for any engineer. If this material also had amazing properties that made it highly conductive of heat and electricity, it would start to sound like something out of a science fiction novel. Yet one Florida State University research group, the Florida Advanced Center for Composite Technologies (FAC2T), is working to develop real-world applications for just such a material.

Ben Wang, a professor of industrial engineering at the Florida A&M University-FSU College of Engineering in Tallahassee, Fla. , serves as director of FAC2T (www.fac2t.eng.fsu.edu), which works to develop new, high-performance composite materials, as well as technologies for producing them.

Wang is widely acknowledged as a pioneer in the growing field of nano-materials science. His main area of research, involving an extraordinary material known as "buckypaper," has shown promise in a variety of applications, including the development of aerospace structures, the production of more-effective body armor and armored vehicles, and the construction of next-generation computer displays. The U.S. military has shown a keen interest in the military applications of Wang's research; in fact, the Army Research Lab recently awarded FAC2T a $2.5-million grant, while the Air Force Office of Scientific Research awarded $1.2 million.

"At FAC2T, our objective is to push the envelope to find out just how strong of a composite material we can make using buckypaper," Wang said. "In addition, we're focused on developing processes that will allow it to be mass-produced cheaply."

Buckypaper is made from carbon nanotubes -- amazingly strong fibers about 1/50,000th the diameter of a human hair that were first developed in the early 1990s. Buckypaper owes its name to Buckminsterfullerene, or Carbon 60 -- a type of carbon molecule whose powerful atomic bonds make it twice as hard as a diamond. Sir Harold Kroto, now a professor and scientist with FSU's department of chemistry and biochemistry, and two other scientists shared the 1996 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for their discovery of Buckminsterfullerene, nicknamed "buckyballs" for the molecules' spherical shape. Their discovery has led to a revolution in the fields of chemistry and materials science -- and directly contributed to the development of buckypaper.

Read the rest of the story at http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2005-10/fsu-sts102005.php


India`s Gem & Jewellery exports rise by 20.73%

The total exports of the Indian Gem & Jewellery Industry was recorded at USD 8391.91 million (Rs. 36486.74 crore) for the period April - September 2005, and showed an impressive growth of 20.73 per cent in dollar terms compared to USD 6951.01 million (Rs. 31477.34 crore) for the corresponding period last year.

The Exports of Cut & Polished diamonds for the period April - September 2005 stood at USD 6265.72 million (Rs.27242.73 crore) indicating a growth of 23.91 per cent as compared to USD 5056.55 million (Rs.22911.26 crore) during the corresponding period of April-September 2004. The Export of coloured gemstones during April-September 2005 showed a growth of 8.62 per cent when compared to the corresponding period last year.

The Gold jewellery Exports stood at USD 1644.56 million in April - September, 2005 as compared to USD 1575.47 million in the same period last year marking a growth of 4.39 per cent. Coloured Gemstone exports were at USD 109.21 million in April - September 2005 in comparison to USD 100.54 million with increase of 8.62 per cent.

As a step further to this, recently, GJEPC along with other trade organizations inaugurated ``National Research Center`` for Diamonds and Gemstones under the aegis of Gemmological Institute of India, which is already a R & D Laboratory approved by the Government of India as a Scientific Industrial Research Organisation. The objectives of the GII and the National Research Centre, spread over 4,500 sq ft is, to offer conference and library facilities, a data bank, provisions for advanced training in gem grading and the latest technology – including the first HRD D-scope in the country. It is also a recognised center for PhD students.

In addition to this, GJEPC is undertaking various promotional measures to further enhance the growth of the Indian gem & jewellery industry globally. The Council has lead various trade delegations to key markets for diamonds and jewellery such as UK, Canada, Russia, Hong Kong, Thailand etc. In addition, GJEPC, on a continuous basis, leads key industry players to 20 major international trade exhibitions and meets across the globe to showcase the prowess and capability of the Indian gem & jewellery industry.