(IDEX Online News) – With the exception of a minute decline in January, polished diamonds imports by Japan completed a yearlong rise in March. The Country imported $73.6 million worth of loose polished diamonds in March, a 20.5 percent year-over-year increase.
The increase also includes a 4.4 percent growth over February, a typical annual cycle.
The volume of imports however suffered a decline, which also typify polished imports in the past year as Japanese consumers' taste shift to higher value diamonds.
The average value of imports stood at $500.24 per carat, increasing 24.4 percent year-over-year, based on figures published by Momozawa & Co., Inc.
Japan imported 147,024 carats, a 3.1 percent decline compared to March 2011 but an 8.1 percent increase over last February.
On March 11, Japan observed the first anniversary of the devastating 8.9 magnitude earthquake that cost the lives of more than 27,000 people. In the aftermath of the March 2011 disaster, which included a tsunami and nuclear meltdown, Japanese purchases of jewelry and art turned upwards, a trend that is continuing until this day.