Many of us have a special place, in our hearts, for diamonds. And how could we not?
Even when we were kids, our parents taught us that diamonds are one of the most valuable and expensive materials on our planet. Diamonds are forever; that sentence is engraved in all of us.
But there are many things about diamonds that the average population doesn’t know, or rather, isn’t that interested in learning. One of those things is, undoubtedly – which country is famous for diamond cutting?
As it turns out, there are quite a few countries famous for diamond cutting – but the most famous one would be India.
Why is it the most famous diamond-cutting country? Are there any controversies regarding this country and diamonds? Which other countries are known for diamond cutting? And how is it decided which country will be selected as a leader in diamond cutting, anyway?
There’s a misconception that diamond-cutting countries are few and far between. Despite what some people think, professional diamond-cutters can be found everywhere – but only a few countries are famous for it.
Learn more about them, shall we?
Why Is Diamond Cutting Important?
Most people often live thinking that it doesn’t matter if a diamond is in its rough and natural shape or if it’s cut. We don’t blame them: many things surrounding diamonds are unknown to the general public.
But when discussing diamond cutting, it’s essential that we know, at least, the bare minimum.
Whenever you decide to visit your local jewelry store with your loved ones, the chances are that you won’t even find any rough diamonds displayed in their natural state.
Although these diamonds have their unique characteristics – only cut diamonds are presented to the average customer.
Now, you might wonder – why?
Well, figuring out the exact price of a diamond is generally not an easy task. Depending on the cut, clarity, weight, and color of a diamond, its price will be set higher – or lower – accordingly.
Before we even start to discuss which countries are famous for diamond cutting, we need to dissect why it is important to cut diamonds. Here’s the thing: To fully see and appreciate the clarity of a diamond, it needs to be cut properly.
For us to observe and enjoy the diamonds’ beautiful shiny characteristics, it needs to interact with the light accordingly. To put it more simply – your average light source can’t penetrate the diamond if it’s in a rough state.
Just to be clear: Rough diamonds are capable of emitting a shiny effect or two, but only to a certain extent that can’t be matched with a well-cut diamond.
And because of that, our society kind of agreed that it’s better to cut diamonds before putting them on the global market. With that in mind: You’ll mainly stumble upon precisely cut diamonds in most jewelry shops; that’s the fan-favorite shape of diamonds for most people.
How hard is it to cut a diamond, anyway?
The good news is, you don’t need to concern yourself with that as the average consumer. There are professionals around the world that possess the necessary skills in diamond cutting.
But, if you want to know the answer – well, let’s just say that it’s pretty complicated. Professional diamond cutters are trained extensively before entering the industry. It’s not that hard to see why:
- First and foremost, people that are handling diamonds need to be trusted with the difficult task of taking care of precious stones. They need to have a clear history, meaning that they have never stolen anything or got in trouble with the law.
- Second, it could take a couple of years for the average human to learn how to cut diamonds professionally. But, if they put enough effort into the learning process, it’s well worth it, as they are highly paid.
- Lastly, diamonds are expensive and unforgiving. The average one-carat diamond won’t cost under $2000 or so. On the other hand, if a diamond cutter makes a single mistake, it will inevitably lower the overall price of that diamond.
As we previously mentioned: Diamond cutting is generally complex – well, complex until someone learns how to do it right, that is.
With all of this in mind, let’s begin to dig into the million-dollar question: Where are these people working from, anyway? By asking that question, we’re getting closer to the main topic of this story, too.
Diamond Cutters Are Located Everywhere
Although this profession isn’t as mainstream as your average 9-to-5 job, people are working as diamond cutters in every corner of the world. How is that possible?
You see, diamonds are highly requested precious stones, and the demand for them is constantly expanding.
Because of that, people needed to come up with a solution to the problem of not having enough diamonds on the market. The answer was hidden in creating artificial diamonds that serve as a “substitute” to real or natural diamonds.
As the industry for artificial diamonds expanded, the demand for professional diamond cutters did, too.
It can be pretty complicated – and flat-out expensive – to cooperate with some people that are located across the country to cut diamonds. With that in mind, manufacturers needed to have professional diamond cutters situated close to their headquarters.
As a result, you can now find diamond cutters nearly everywhere. Well, not everywhere per se, but you get what we are trying to say here. It’s a much more common profession than many realize.
But what about natural diamonds? Well, things get a bit more tricky when discussing natural diamonds, as you can’t dig them up everywhere.
Here’s a fun fact: Most quality-grade diamonds are found in Russia, followed by the continent of Africa.
With that in mind, people needed to decide where they would ship their diamonds for polishing and cutting, as it’s frankly impossible to have those laboratories next to the diamond excavation points. And don’t even get us started on the security issues.
To avoid that, manufacturers needed a location for cutting and polishing diamonds that is both close and heavily guarded. As it turns out, companies came up with several ideas – but one of them was voted as the number one choice.
- Can Jewelers Cut Diamonds?
- Who Is The Best Diamond Cutter In The World?
- When Did They Stop Cutting Diamonds by Hand?
Just by reading that word – India – you’ve come across the most famous diamond-cutting country in the world.
There are many controversies regarding this entire topic, though – so, we’ll start by immediately explaining why India was chosen as the number one location.
Most of us are aware that the country of India has a highly dense population, crowded in a relatively small country. Well, just to be clear, India isn’t small per se – the only reason why people see it as such is that there are a lot of people living there.
It can be quite difficult for an average outsider to venture there and find a highly paid job. People from India are mostly living modest lives, working in hundreds of markets scattered across the country.
Surviving there isn’t easy – especially if you’re new to the area. With all of that in mind, the diamond-making industry decided that it would be a smart business choice to relocate its diamond-cutting sector to India.
That probably seems illogical to the average reader, but there’s a pretty smart and simple trick to this decision:
As we previously mentioned, India is a developing country that’s inhabited by over a billion people. You can see where this is going; with a country that’s craving for more and more workplaces, India was the best solution for the diamond industry.
Is It Easy To Cut Diamonds In India?
The tricky part is what comes next. With so many people looking to work with diamonds, the diamond-making industry had an easy choice deciding the average monthly payment for the people that worked in India.
You guessed it correctly:
When compared to the average individual working with diamonds outside of India, they receive considerably less money. Just look at the numbers – currently, there are well beyond 3 million people employed in the diamond industry in India alone.
On the one hand, it’s formidable to choose a location that sees a lot of problems with finance and prosperity. But, on the other hand, paying a small amount of money to them is both bad for the economy – and the personal lives of the people of India.
Currently, there isn’t a solution to this problem. It’s a well-established monopoly between the manufacturers and the people in India. We can just hope that something will change in the near future. Until then, three million people in India will be underpaid by the diamond industry.
Let’s get back to the topic:
India cuts and polishes almost 90% of all diamonds. That means that only one in ten natural and verified diamonds weren’t located – at one point or another – in India.
It’s crazy when you think about how most diamonds need to travel across the world just to be cut and polished. Take a look through the window of one of your local jewelry shops, and you’ll undoubtedly mostly see diamonds that were cut in India.
But are all diamond types cut only in India? Are there some diamonds that are exclusively cut somewhere else?
That’s an interesting topic to discuss – and it hides another misconception regarding diamond cutting.
Although nearly all diamonds are primarily cut in India, some diamonds are cut only in Israel. On the one hand, India is primarily hosting small-sized diamonds – and on the other, Israel generally works with bigger diamonds.
So, besides India, are there any other countries that are famous for diamond cutting?
Israel And China
As we mentioned, Israel is, alongside India, working within the diamond-making industry. China is relatively new to cutting diamonds – which is supported by the fact that they have been in this business for less than five years.
Oddly enough, in that short span, China has made itself one of the best diamond-cutting countries in the world. Make no mistake; India sits firmly in the number one spot for diamond cutting.
But that is because they have the lowest expenses out of all the countries in the game. Let’s take a closer look:
- Despite being the most trusted and popular diamond-cutting country in the world, India only spends $10 per carat on cutting and polishing diamonds.
- China, being relatively new to diamond-cutting, roughly needs $17 for cutting and polishing diamonds.
- Without the usage of speculation, it’s impossible to determine the exact cost for diamond-cutting in Israel.
- In South Africa, it costs up to $60 per carat for cutting and polishing diamonds.
In one way or the other, diamonds will sit firmly as one of the most valuable precious stones in the world. Their unique characteristics and the fact that they are so rare speaks volume about their overall price and status on the market.
If you wish to buy jewelry that’s embedded with diamonds, the chances are that that piece of jewelry will be embedded with diamonds that were cut in India.
Although diamonds can be everywhere, there are only a few locations in the world that are verified to have real – as in, natural – diamonds. Searching for them in the open is impossible: If you wish to obtain some, you’ll have to buy them in one of your local jewelry shops.
But, before they are displayed in these shops, diamonds need to be taken care of properly. And to determine the exact price of diamonds, professionals look into their color, clarity, carats – and cut.
Today, we took a closer look at which country is famous for diamond cutting.
Currently, the most famous country for diamond cutting is India. There isn’t a close second! Nine out of ten diamonds will be shipped to India for cutting and polishing. There’s a high chance that all diamonds in your possession were processed in India.
Other countries, such as Israel, China, and South Africa, are also a part of this industry. But India has a volume of work that’s unrivaled when compared to other countries.
That’s it for today. We hope that this post was helpful – and that it expanded your knowledge on cutting diamonds. Before you go, though, there’s one thing we’d like to add:
We believe that people should spread awareness about the working conditions and payment rates in India for diamond-cutting jobs.