Andrey Zharkov, the newly appointed President of the Russian mining company ALROSA, the world's largest diamond producer by volume, confirmed that he will be heading an ALROSA delegation to attend the 2015 Presidents' Meeting in Tel Aviv next week.
The meeting, which is the biennial gathering of the World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB) and the International Diamond Manufacturers Association (IDMA), is being hosted by the Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) and the Israel Diamond Manufacturers Association (IsDMA), and will be held at the Tel Aviv Hilton Hotel, June 14-16, 2015.
"I look forward to visiting Israel for the first time in my capacity as ALROSA president, "Zharkov stated. "It is a grand opportunity to take the pulse of the diamond industry and trade, to meet the global diamond industry leadership and to confer with our Israeli counterparts," he added.
"We're delighted to have Mr. Zharkov with us for the Presidents' Meeting," said Israel Diamond Exchange President Shmuel Schnitzer, who is also an Honorary WFDB President. "Since the topic of rough diamond supplies will be high on the agenda of both the WFDB and IDMA, we appreciate Mr. Zharkov taking time to spend with us and take part in our organization's discussions and deliberations.
"The presence of two of the world's leading diamond suppliers, ALROSA and the De Beers Group, will facilitate significant discourse between the diamond industry's leadership and the miners," Schnitzer said.
De Beers' CEO, Philippe Mellier will also participate in the 2015 Presidents' Meeting and will address the meeting.
IDE President Schnitzer noted that the IDE board and Presidium of the Israel Diamond Manufacturers Association (IsDMA) will meet with the ALROSA delegation for follow up talks on the MoU that was signed by ALROSA and the IDE earlier this year during the International Diamond Week in Israel.
IsDMA President Jacob (Kobi) Korn, who is also Executive Vice President of the IDE, said the presence of two of the world's major diamond producers was an important landmark for the event.
"The current challenges our industry is facing affect all players in the diamond supply pipeline," he noted. "Industry financing, and the perceived lack of it, as well as the dwindling market share of diamonds and diamond jewelry in the consumer markets are of concern to all of us. The miners are very much aware of these challenges and we look forward to interacting with them on these issues," Korn added.